As COVID-19 hit with a greater audacity lockdowns in many countries were acted upon, several state governments have decided to promote students from Class 1 to 9 to the next academic year without holding school level exams. But the conflict rose when the virus started spreading like cancer in few countries and Cambridge made it clear that, they would cancel exams in such severe and sensitive situations.
In the last months, It was expected and even Cambridge planned for exams to be executed for schools in Saudi Arabia and also for UAE.
On the contrary students were not permitted to return to school, and the circumstances in Saudi Arabia and UAE at present indicated a low chance of exams being able to take place for schools for the current year, thus, It was decided to switch to an approach based on teacher assessment in Saudi Arabia. This means that exams for Cambridge IGCSE, O Level, and International AS & A Level will no longer be held in Saudi Arabia and UAE in the June 2021 series, and students will switch to an approach of having expected grades.
Its is crystal clear that this will come as a disappointment to many students who have been working extremely hard to ace their exams, but students should understand the current situation thus Cambridge is forced to ask schools and colleges not to conduct exams where the circumstances do not permit them to.
Lets look at the recent updates from Cambridge associated with examinations.
Below is an overview of school assessed grades for the June 2021 series:
Teachers are to provide an assessed grade based on the level of achievement that each student has demonstrated.
To assess these grades, teachers are asked to identify a portfolio of three substantial pieces of work from each student in every syllabus.
Teacher’s assessed grades will be sent to Cambridge between mid-may and late June. It will also be made sure that details of the internal quality assurance processes that teachers have followed while collating portfolios of student work are also provided to Cambridge International so that they can further carry out external quality assurance checks on grades.
Schools are also encouraged to continue with teaching and learning, and to take advantage of the opportunity to assess their students as near as possible to the time that exams would normally take place.
For private students solutions may include transferring private candidates to a school where they are enrolled, or a center that is able to provide them with a school assessed grade.
Collectively students and the parents now have the clarity because of uncertainties over the examinations and the institutions can now focus on preparing evidence for the final grades.
As for Pakistan, it is decided that all Cambridge International AS & A Level examinations will take place as timetabled (starting from 26 April 2021), so that students can progress to the next stage of their education.
It is agreed in consensus with Pakistani Government that Cambridge examination body that the exams will be held in Pakistan from tenth May and this will open doors for many more students to progress and give them an oppurtunity to demonstrate what they have studied.
Furthermore, there are no current updates whether Cambridge can reschedule any exams that were due to be held before the 10 May to a later date but there is a possibility that the Cambridge O levels results may be delayed, but Cambridge International AS & A Level results will be announced on 10 August 2021. This will enable Cambridge students to secure their university places in Pakistan and overseas.