Richard Lochhead

Moray SNP News



Richard Lochhead MSP has welcomed the announcement by the Deputy First Minister today that all downgraded awards will be withdrawn following concerns about the number of children and young people affected. 

Mr Swinney confirmed to Parliament today that the SQA has been asked to reissue awards based solely on teacher or lecturer judgement. Schools will be able to confirm the estimates they provided for pupils to those that are returning to school this week and next.

The SQA will issue fresh certificates to affected candidates  as soon as possible and will inform UCAS and other admission bodies of the new grades as soon as practical in the coming days to allow for applications to college and university to be progressed.

In those cases where moderation led to an increased grade, learners will not lose that award. Many of those young people will already have moved on to secure college or university places on the strength of the awards made to them. To unpick them now would not in any way be fair.

Due to the unique circumstances of this situation, this year the Scottish Government will ensure there are enough places in universities and colleges  to ensure that no one is crowded out of a place they would otherwise have been awarded.

Commenting Mr Lochhead said:

“Many young people and adult learners across Moray will have been impacted by the SQA’s moderation and will have received downgraded awards as a result of the approach to certification adopted following the cancellation of the exam diet due to the global pandemic.

“I know from feedback from families in Moray that many felt that some awards had been decided by a statistical model rather than by merit and I’ve no doubt that they will welcome the commitment to withdraw these downgraded awards and to reissue awards based on the teacher or lecturer judgement.

“I hope that learners in Moray are reassured that the Scottish Government has listened and those who were affected will now achieve the grades that teachers and lecturers judged they deserved.

“My message to our young people and adult learners in Moray is that you have shown incredible resilience over the last few months and you should be incredibly proud of what you have achieved.”