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A High Performing Specialist Academy for Technology & Applied Learning

6 October 2021


Year 11 reports will be visible on Edulink from Thursday 14 October rather than Wednesday 13 October as advertised in the calendar. 

Year 11 Sport Science and iMedia Cambridge Nationals Only

Due to the disruption caused by the pandemic OCR (examination board) have asked schools to enter a TAG (Teacher Assessed Grade) for the Sports Science and iMedia courses for their Exam Units or coursework units in which were due to be assessed in summer 2021.  Evidence to determine the unit TAG can only be taken from work produced up to 31 August 2021.

The TAG that we have sent to the examination boards for these students will be available on Edulink from Tuesday 12 October.

If any student is unhappy with their TAG and wishes to be entered for the January exam season, they need to submit their entry by Thursday 21 October at the absolute latest.  They have also got the summer season as an option.  If anyone does want to sit the exam it will take place on Monday 10 January at 9am.  Grades will be confirmed by OCR on Thursday 13 January 2022.

Any queries please contact the College on the email address:

Summary of 2022 Exams Announcements  

Last week the DfE and Ofqual published a number of documents setting out plans for GCSEs, AS levels, A levels and vocational qualifications next year.  The key points from these documents are below: 


  • There will be optional topics and content in GCSE English literature, history, ancient history and geography. 
  • If necessary, centres will be allowed to deliver practical work in GCSE biology, chemistry, physics, combined science, geology and astronomy, AS level biology, chemistry, physics and geology, and AS and A level environmental science by demonstration. 
  • Centres will be allowed to assess the Common Practical Assessment Criteria (CPAC) across the minimum number of practical activities required to enable students to demonstrate their competence in A level biology, chemistry, physics and geology. 
  • Students taking GCSE, AS and A level art and design will be assessed on their portfolio only. 
  • Exam boards will provide advanced information about the focus of the content of exams for all GCSE, AS and A level subjects except GCSE English literature, history, ancient history and geography by 7 February 2022 at the latest. This could be released earlier ‘if circumstances require’. 
  • Students will be given a formulae sheet for GCSE mathematics and a revised equation sheet for GCSE physics and combined science. 


  • 2022 will be a ‘transition year’ to reflect the fact that we are in a pandemic recovery period and students’ education has been disrupted. 
  • Ofqual will therefore aim for grades in 2022 to reflect a midway point between 2021 and 2019. This means that results overall next year will be higher than in 2019 but not as high as in 2020. 
  • Exam boards will use data as a starting point, to align their standards in a subject. But the grade boundaries for each specification will be set by the senior examiners after they have reviewed the work produced by students. 
  • Grades for students sitting exams in Autumn 2021 will be aligned with grading in Summer 2021. 
  • When predicting grades for UCAS this year, Ofqual recommends that teachers use the 2019 standard as the basis, but that they give borderline students the benefit of any doubt. 
  • In 2023, Ofqual aims to return to results that are in line with those in pre-pandemic years. 

Results Days

Results for exams next year will return to their normal format, with AS and A levels being released on 18 August, and GCSEs on 25 August.  

Contingency Plans 

  • The government has launched a two-week consultation on what contingency arrangements should be put in place if GCSE, AS and A level exams cannot go ahead as planned in 2022. 
  • The government’s proposal is essentially a tweaked TAG process, with tighter guidance on the evidence on which TAGs would be based. Specific suggestions include: 
    • planned assessment points from which to gather evidence (e.g. once in each of the late autumn, spring and early summer terms) 
    • the use, at these assessment points, of approaches which replicate exam board papers and exam conditions 
  • It is likely that the government will produce guidance on this process, once the consultation is complete and the final approach is agreed. 

Allergies - Natasha’s Law

Since the start of term, food labelling has been compliant with Natasha’s Law (also known as the UK Food Information Amendment), in readiness for the new legislation which came into force on Friday 1 October.  The legislation is being introduced to protect allergy sufferers and give them confidence in the food they buy.  All catering provided by the College is nut-free with detailed allergen information provided at catering outlets for each menu option.  Our caterers are able to tailor meals to meet a wide range of dietary requirements or allergies.

If your child has a food allergy, please inform the College via the usual parent communication channels.

Any students with a severe allergy are provided with care and support in accordance with our Supporting Students with Medical Needs Policy.  A large number of our staff are trained in the use of auto injectors (epi-pens) and receive regular refresher training.  Where appropriate, an Individual Health Care Plan (IHCP) and or risk assessment is completed to identify any necessary adjustments or additional support.

Open Evenings Thursday 7 October and Thursday 14 October -  Early College Closures

A reminder that College will finish at 12.30pm on Thursday 7 October and at 2.00pm on Thursday 14 October as we prepare for our Open Evening and Sixth Form Open Evening respectively.  My thanks to the students who have volunteered to help with both events.

I hope as many of those parents/carers with students joining Year 7 and Year 12 next September as possible will be able to join us.

Mr Tanner - Principal

Curriculum Information