• Kenneth Gibson MSP

Exams to go Ahead this Spring as Planned


The SNP Government has reiterated its firm intention to hold National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher exams this Spring.


Education Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville MSP also confirmed that £4 million will be used to support schools and colleges provide targeted exam preparation sessions for learners who need it most over the Easter break.


Taking into consideration ongoing disruption within schools, the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) has decided to invoke its Scenario 2 contingency and will provide revision support in early March to aid learners in preparing for their exams.


It complements the significant modifications SQA has already made to reduce the volume of assessment and ease the workload of pupils, teachers and lecturers.


SQA has also announced a series of measures that will support delivery of the qualifications this year and that acknowledge the disruption caused by the pandemic:


  • Exceptional circumstances back-up for pupils who are unable to attend their exam or exams due to illness or bereavement

  • Grading exams this year will look to factor in the impact of the pandemic on pupils

  • Once the results have been published, pupils will have free direct access to appeal.


Ms Somerville said:


“It remains my firm intention that exams will take place as planned - they will only be cancelled if public health advice says it isn’t safe.”


Kenneth Gibson MSP added:


“Parents and pupils across North Ayrshire will be pleased that the SNP Government continues to act to ensure our pupils are fully supported in their learning and preparations for the exams this year.


“Living through a 2-year pandemic has had a profound impact on us all, but particularly on children. I hope they can now see again that there is a bright future ahead of them.


“It is great to see pupils going to school again and it will be great to see them pass their National 5s, Highers and Advanced Highers come Spring."


Read about the Scottish Qualifications Authority’s contingencies and measures to support learners. This includes an overview of the existing modifications and the planned revision support for each subject.


These measures have been developed in close consultation with members of the National Qualifications Group, including the Association of Directors of Education in Scotland (ADES); Colleges Scotland; Education Scotland; Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS); National Parent Forum of Scotland (NPFS); School Leaders Scotland (SLS); Scottish Council of Independent Schools (SCIS); Scottish Government; Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA); Scottish Youth Parliament (SYP).


ENDS