Hope for pupils as exam bosses say grades could be given if they miss GCSEs because of train strike chaos
- Students who miss GCSEs because of rail strikes could still be given a grade
- A grade may be awarded if the pupil completes at least one part of the exam
- Students should speak to their school, said the Joint Council for Qualifications
Students who miss their GCSEs because of rail strikes could still be given a grade that takes ‘circumstances beyond their control’ into consideration.
The Joint Council for Qualifications, which includes the eight biggest exam boards, including AQA, said yesterday: ‘In circumstances where a candidate cannot sit their exam through circumstances beyond their control, then special consideration will apply.’
It added that a grade may be awarded under special consideration if the pupil completes at least one part of the exam.
The council has advised: ‘Students should speak to their school or college who will make an application for special consideration.’
Students who miss their GCSEs because of rail strikes could still be given a grade
The council, which make up the eight largest providers of qualifications in the UK including AQA and CCEA said: ‘In circumstances where a candidate cannot sit their exam through circumstances beyond their control, then special consideration will apply.
‘A grade may be awarded provided the candidate has met the minimum requirement that at least one component of the specification has been completed. This is the same process that’s followed in every exam series.’
It comes as the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) announced that 50,000 of its workers at Network Rail and 13 train operators will walk out on June 21, 23 and 25 – warning that more strikes would follow if a row over pay and job cuts was not resolved.
The strike is another blow to travellers who are already facing a summer of chaos at airports due to staff shortages.
The industrial action will cause havoc for people with tickets for several major events, including Glastonbury and the historic Eastbourne International tennis tournament.
The tennis tournament, which is said to be subjected to traffic disruption, will take place between June 18 and June 25 and feature some of the sport’s biggest names, including defending champion Jelena Ostapenko.
Eastbourne Conservative party leader Robert Smith said the strikes were a ‘kick in the teeth’ for tennis fans.
He explained: ‘It is completely unacceptable and should not happen.
‘Let’s hope that they are called off before they take place. They will clearly have an impact on all events going on and of course day to day life for many people.
‘It is a kick in the teeth to fans who want to come. We’ve got a star lineup of tennis players on an international basis and you have top 10 tennis players saying what a wonderful place Eastbourne is.
The Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) announced that 50,000 of its workers at Network Rail and 13 train operators will walk out on June 21, 23 and 25
‘It is not helpful is it. It will have an impact if it continues to take place. We should urge the RMT to back off.’
Eastbourne MP Caroline Ansell added: ‘I am very disappointed the RMT has called this strike because it will affect one of Eastbourne’s flagship events. I do not think this is responsible as we face economic headwinds.
‘Businesses in my constituency are counting on the many visitors coming for the tennis.
‘Anything that jeopardises attendance like this is a serious concern and I urge the union to reconsider.’
Talks are to be held in the next few days in a bid to advert the widespread disruption.
No direct meetings are planned between the union and train operators, although the RMT said it is open to ‘meaningful negotiations’ to try to resolve the dispute.
RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: ‘Railway workers have been treated appallingly and, despite our best efforts in negotiations, the rail industry, with the support of the Government, has failed to take their concerns seriously.
‘We have a cost-of-living crisis, and it is unacceptable for railway workers to either lose their jobs or face another year of a pay freeze when inflation is at 11.1 per cent and rising.
‘Our union will now embark on a sustained campaign of industrial action which will shut down the railway system.’