EDUCATION Minister, Peter Weir, has announced a return to public examinations during the next academic year.
Young people will, however, have fewer examinations in 2022 and there will be significant reductions in assessment across the range of CCEA qualifications.
Speaking in the Assembly, Mr Weir said, “I am pleased today to bring forward a clear plan for qualifications in 2022, in advance of the start of the next academic year. I hope this timely announcement and the comprehensive package of measures I have put in place will provide school leaders, teachers, parents and, most importantly, young people with the clarity and reassurance they need.
“I am announcing a roadmap for a return to public examinations for all CCEA Qualifications in 2022. A planned return to public examinations is not, however, a return to business as usual.
“I am mindful of the need to consider our young people’s mental health and well-being; the many difficulties they have faced with great resilience; and the significant disruption to their learning during not one but two academic years.
“In light of this, I have decided that young people will have significantly fewer examinations next year and I am today announcing a package of significant reductions in assessment across the range of CCEA qualifications.”
A unit of study will be omitted from the vast majority of GCSE, AS and A Level qualifications in 2022. Unit omissions will also be applied across CCEA Entry Level, Occupational Studies and Vocationally Related qualifications.
Commenting further, the Minister said, “I am very conscious that our young people have faced incredible challenges as a result of this pandemic. In making these adaptations to examinations, we will ensure that their lives are not defined or held back by the disruption they have experienced.
“I want to publicly thank each and every teacher, school leader, Governor and all the other vital support staff that work in and around our schools, for their incredible efforts. They have dealt with a wide range of difficult and exceptional issues. Thanks to their efforts our children have been able to return to school and continue their education.”
Details of changes to qualifications will be available on the CCEA website from early June 2021.