Thank you for contacting me about exams in 2022 and beyond.
I fully understand that this has been a very challenging time for school pupils and I can assure you of my commitment to ensuring that pupils are not left behind as a result of the pandemic. The Government has invested heavily in laptops and remote education, and I welcome that this has the potential to improve pupil outcomes.in the long term.
Like the Government, I am clear that exams are the fairest method by which to assess students. As such, I understand that it is the Government’s firm intention that exams will take place in summer 2022 and the Department for Education has engaged with a wide range of stakeholders who have called for exams to go ahead. I am aware that the Department is working with Ofqual, exam boards, and representatives of schools and colleges to ensure that contingency arrangements are in place for scenarios where exams cannot be held for any reason. I understand that Ofqual and the Department for Education launched a consultation which concluded in August on how to approach arrangements for 2022. I have been assured that the Department is currently considering the responses to that consultation and will announce final decisions shortly.
In the meantime, Ministers understand that students will need help to catch-up with their education. I am pleased that on top of the £3 billion that has already been announced to help children catch up on learning they missed during the pandemic, the Government has announced a range of further support measures. This includes £1 billion for national tutoring revolution which will see up to 100 million tutoring hours for children and young people across England - National tutoring programme (NTP) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
In addition, I understand that the Government is investing £400 million to give early years practitioners and 500,000 school teachers across the country training and support. Schools and colleges will also receive funding to give some Year 13 students the option to repeat their final year.
These measures will allow the Government to deliver on its ambitious, long-term education recovery plan. The next stage of this plan will include a review of time spent in school and college, and the impact this could have on helping children and young people catch up. The findings of this review will be set out later in the year, and I will closely follow developments.
Young people have sacrificed so much over the last year and I am committed to ensuring that, as we build back better from the pandemic, no child is left behind.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.
Richard Fuller MP