Category: S4 to S6

SQA Update – 21st April, 2020

Message from Maria Lloyd – Head of Education at Fife Council

The SQA provided a further update today on how schools will determine estimate grades, bands and rank order to be submitted to SQA to allow them to make awarding decisions this year:

Across all of our schools, we are working to ensure that our young people get recognition for their hard work and receive the qualifications they deserve. The SQA have asked us to subdivide each existing band, place learners within these band categories and then to rank order their learners within each estimated grade. The estimated grades submitted to SQA will then allow them to use this information along with, where available, prior attainment to ascertain whether a centre’s estimates this session are consistent with outcomes in previous years.  All of this information will be used by the SQA to finalise the award outcomes. The SQA will continue to support us in this process through online advice and our teachers will be able access this.

Be assured that our teachers have worked with our young people for a significant period of time and have a range of evidence to draw on, in order to make an accurate professional judgement of what they are capable of achieving. This analysis will allow teachers, departments and schools to arrive at an estimated grade which best reflects the work and the progress your child has made and therefore makes a best estimate of how they might have performed if they had completed coursework or folio and final exam.

To further support teachers and departments across schools, Fife has produced quality assurance materials and provided all necessary data to support our staff in making these estimates.

I again ask you for your continued cooperation and support in this process and not to contact schools for these estimates.

The SQA have also committed to further support through the post results service, which this year will be an appeal process.  Results will still be issued to young people by 4 August. We continue to strongly encourage all young people to sign-up to MySQA, the online and text service, as a direct way to receive their results. Further information is available for learners, parents and carers in the Frequently Asked Questions section of the website.

While I accept that this whole process is very different to the normal exam diet, I am confident that by working in close partnership with SQA and across schools, the hard work of Fife’s young people will be properly recognised and accredited.

SQA Exam Diet and Skills Development Scotland Support Update

03451 555555 ext. 480217
Your Ref:
Our Ref: ML/EF
25 March 2020

Dear Parent / Carer

SQA Exam Diet and Skills Development Scotland Support

You will now be fully aware the 2020 exam diet has been cancelled. Inevitably this means there will be some uncertainty for our young people who were preparing for exams. I want to reassure you and your children that teachers, who know your children best as learners, will be doing everything they can to ensure they are awarded their best possible qualification(s).

Part of what teachers do already is to gather ongoing evidence throughout the year for completing courses for qualifications. This includes completing coursework, assignments and folios.

Our teachers will work hard to use all available evidence to support their professional judgement to give accurate predictions. I want to emphasise that there is no need for your child to be in school to complete work. We now know following the updated announcement by the SQA on 24 March that certification will be based on predicted attainment, coursework and assessment from throughout the year.

The SQA will provide further details on the estimation of grades as soon as possible and they will inform us of what they will need from teachers and the approach that will be taken to certification. At this stage I would ask you not to contact your child’s school as we are still awaiting further instructions from SQA.

The SQA have indicated that their post-results service will be free of charge this year. This service is when the school are concerned about the grade your child has been awarded and they can request a clerical review. Parents cannot request this directly to the SQA.

The current SQA system has a large amount of statistical information that will allow for checks and balances to be made to ensure a fair outcome for your child. This includes statistical checks on the normal pattern of attainment across a school, a subject area and across the local authority. We will continue to work with SQA to ensure the hard work of our young people has been properly recognised and accredited fairly.

Skills Development Scotland (SDS)

I also wanted to take this opportunity to inform you that SDS are still continuing to do the following: –

  • Provide career, information, advice and guidance for all young people. Our school careers advisers are endeavouring to maintain contact with pupils and they are looking at how we can further develop on-line services to support them. This will be done via telephone, Skype or online. To speak to a Careers Adviser call your local centre on 01592 645180 (Kirkcaldy Centre) and 01383 745610 (Dunfermline Centre). Details of all our centres can be found on My World of Work. Calls are being automatically re-routed to advisers (all of whom are home-working). Messaging can be provided for your comms channels if needed. Please be reassured that SDS Careers Advisers will continue to proactively contact pupils to offer them ongoing support.
  • Work with the SQA and other awarding bodies in relation to Foundation Apprenticeships. This work will support their guidance for individuals and learning providers to ensure that the effects of disruption are minimised and that wherever possible, apprentices and learners are not negatively impacted in the longer term.
  • Share social media posts from SDS social channels to inform teachers, pupils, parents and carers of our ongoing support.

As soon as we have any further information we will share this with you. Thank you in anticipation of your ongoing support.

Yours sincerely

Maria Lloyd

Head of Education (Secondary Schools and Specialist Support)


SQA Exam Diet Update 25032020

SCHOLAR – now available to S3


Covid-19 Additional Support

Temporary guest account for S3 learners

Learners in S3 studying level 4 material as part of the broad general education (BGE), often cover topics common to National 5 courses and may find access to SCHOLAR National 5 courses useful.

If S3 students have not yet been enrolled, to let them work on the course materials, for the next 28 days they will be able to access our National 5 courses using the account details below. Please note, when using this account their teacher will not be able to track their progress, review their performance or mark any extended answers.

Username:          ges3nat5

Password:           bird70pear

Best wishes,