Education Bureau finds ‘inadequacies’ in development of history exams for Hong Kong

The report hinted at failings by the exams body, which had a quality control mechanism in place, but one that only functioned properly when all personnel carried out their duties in strict compliance with the rules. The controversy over the history tests started in May when the exam body scrapped a controversial university entrance exam question on early 20th century Sino-Japanese relations at the behest of the Education Bureau. Read more at: South China Morning Post

GCSEs 2021 – Tests reveal ‘dramatic’ learning loss

The UK Association of School and College Leaders asked members for their insights into how much learning has been lost by Years 11 and 13 during the pandemic. Headteachers have spoken of “dramatic” levels of learning loss among exam cohorts this year revealed by mock exams and catch-up tests. The warnings come amid an ongoing debate over whether more needs to be done to mitigate the effects of Covid-19 on students sitting exams in the summer of 2021. Read moer at: Times Educational Supplement

OECD Webinar: Measuring the impacts of COVID-19 on education

Knowing that future progress may be at stake, countries are now trying to find ways to assess just what impact the crisis has had and how student learning experiences have changed, as well as trying to find a way to gauge how crises in general affect education systems. Join Andreas Schleicher, OECD Director for Education and Skills, and Dr. Jonas P. Bertling, Director of Large-Scale Assessment Questionnaires at the Educational Testing Service, as they discuss the effects of COVID-19 on education and how the new PISA Global Crises Module can help governments respond. More information here, register via Zoom here

SQA National 5 exams cancelled in Scotland for 2021 as Higher and Advanced Higher delayed

In a statement to the Scottish Parliament, Education Secretary John Swinney said: “Pupils have already lost a significant amount of learning time because of coronavirus. My priority is to ensure that learning is assessed fairly and consistently so that pupils can be confident in the results they gain.“Given the real risk of further disruption to education, it would not be sensible or fair to plan for a full exam diet in 2021. Coronavirus has not gone away. If anything, it is making a comeback. Source: Glasgow Live

Judge bars University of California from all use of SAT, ACT scores in admissions

The University of California, which has already stopped requiring applicants to take the SAT or ACT, must go further and prohibit campuses from allowing prospective students to submit their scores, a judge ruled Tuesday in a victory for students with disabilities.The UC regents voted in May to drop the Scholastic Aptitude Test and American College Testing exam as admissions requirements, in response to complaints by low-income, minority and disabled students that the standardized tests were unfair to applicants who could not afford preparation classes and tutors, or whose first language was not English. Source: San Fransico Chronicle.com

Swedish university exam unlikely to go ahead at all this year

It is looking increasingly unlikely that ‘högskoleprovet’ – an exam used by thousands of students every year as a way to enter Swedish university will go ahead – despite a government U-turn.The Swedish Scholastic Aptitude Test (SweSAT, or högskoleprovet) is normally held twice a year, but was cancelled in spring and then later in autumn due to the coronavirus pandemic. But after pressure from opposition parties, the government last week said it would pave the way for the test to take place on its usual date in October in a limited format, open only to people who had not previously…

England’s exam results fiasco has exposed its flawed education system

There is nothing a politician fears more than the organised public wrath of a group of articulate parents, headteachers and the ex-chief inspector of schools. The approaching furore over A-level and GCSE results, when up to 40% of teacher predictions in England are likely to be downgraded, suggests we have a long, hot summer of complaint, campaigns, appeals or even judicial reviews ahead. The Scottish government’s decision yesterday to review its now publicly repudiated system for allocating exam grades, very similar to that used in England, only adds to the mounting pressure on the government. Source: The Guardian

The beginning of the end of our obsession with standardized tests

America has been obsessed with student standardized tests for nearly 20 years. Now it looks like the country is at the beginning of the end of our high-stakes testing mania — both for K-12 “accountability” purposes and in college admissions. Source: The Washington Post
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