The Algarve International School is an official Pearson Edexcel Examination Centre and offers iGCSEs and A levels following the UK curriculum.
This year the Coronavirus meant that students did not sit any of the summer exam series, including A levels, GCSEs and other qualifications. International and National UK curriculum examinations were cancelled as the world attempted to fight to stop the spread of coronavirus. It was all about estimates.
Exam boards, Pearson Edexcel being the one The Algarve international School work with, asked teachers, who know their students well, to submit their judgement about the grade that they believed each student would have received if exams had gone ahead. This agreement in all schools worldwide was to mark each candidate and give them predicted grades taking into account any mock examination results, assessments, coursework, where applicable, and class set work. Teachers then submitted a grade that was a true reflection of what each student would have achieved had the examinations taken place.
THE NEW GRADING STRUCTURE
Both iGCSEs and GCSEs are awarded using the new nine point grading scale (9-1) which was introduced by the UK government in 2017 to raise standards and to recognise high performing students.
Three number grades 9,8 and 7 correspond to the old style top grades of A and A* - this was designed to give more differentation with top grades.
The exam watchdog, Ofqual, states that fewer grade 9's will be awarded than A*'s and that anyone who gets a 9 will have performed exceptionally.
A grade 4 is broadly being compared to a C grade.A grade 4 is seen as a standard pass and a grade 5 a strong pass.
A U grade means ungraded.
The reality is that schools in general will be pushing students to gain a grade 5 or higher.