How to help kids whose exams have been cancelled

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How to help kids whose exams have been cancelled

With UK and some International exams cancelled this summer, a new system of grading has been introduced.

The exam boards have implemented a predicted grade and ranking system where teachers will provide a predicted grade for each student based on previous book work, class work and any mocks, and then rank the students within the grade boundaries.

These results will then be moderated by Ofqual to normalise the grades in comparison to other year groups and to issue grades for exam students this year.

While some students are relieved not to face the pressure of exams others are disappointed that they will not have a chance to demonstrate their academic prowess this summer. So what are exam students meant to do now? "Plenty," says Fiona Mckenzie, head of education at Carfax Education Group.

"For Year 11 (Grade ten) students, it is still imperative that they finish their GCSE courses. All of the learning embedded in these curricula is part of building a platform for future study.  Those gaps need to be filled so they do not come back to haunt them later on," she explains.

"This is also a great time for Year 11 students to try out different IB and A Level subjects before they firmly commit to their choices for next year.  Take “Step Up” classes covering modules of year 12 work in different subjects to get a taster of what is involved.  This is also a great way of getting ahead ready for a new start in September," she adds.

For Year 13 (Grade12) students now is the time to be preparing for University. So what should these students be doing?

"Firstly, they need to thoroughly research their choices before they make their final choices next month for the UK," McKenzie explains.

"Then they can get ahead by taking Master Classes in their relevant subjects and making a start on the University reading list. They can be taking the time to read about current affairs so they can see how they relate to their studies, and also to research internships so that they are familiar with how to apply for them next summer. The employment market will be tough for a few years so building skills and knowledge now will give them a competitive edge."

McKenzie also says that many students are looking at this time as an opportunity to learn a new skill.

She tells us that lots of students are picking up a new language, learning how to code, or how to build an app or a computer game, while for others it is a time to indulge in their passions, experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen, reading a book for pure pleasure, or starting to write one, catching up on some classic movies or making your own film.

And McKenzie explains that this is all extremely positive and will provide students with a great skills that will be beneficial in later life.

"All of these things can be of great value as they will keep their learning habits and brain engaged until they get back to full time study," she concludes.

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