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Statement in response to Welsh Government exams announcement on 20 January

“During a global pandemic, what seems certain at one point can change rapidly, and the decisions around assessments for 2021 have been no exception. But what I’ve asked of Government when it comes to decisions about learners’ assessment is to is to make sure young people’s wellbeing is a primary consideration, and to ensure the following: fairness to all learners wherever they’re educated, transparency in decisions, and a system that will enable learners to appeal if necessary to ensure all young people are rewarded with fair grades which are based on the best possible evidence.

“The solution announced by the Minister today has been based on advice from teaching professionals, and takes account of the ongoing disruption caused by the pandemic. I also know the Minister has listened to and is concerned about the impact this is having on the well-being of our young people. I am confident that this has also influenced the decision she has announced.

“I hope today’s decision takes away the uncertainty which has caused so much anxiety for our young people, and will enable them now to continue with their learning free from the worry of what might be coming next. Today’s decision provides a deliverable solution and much needed clarity and I hope everyone will get behind this to ensure young people feel as confident as possible, can concentrate on their learning and get the education and qualifications they deserve.”