Guardian News and Media/Edinburgh
More than 100,000 Scottish exam grades which were marked down last week will be reinstated, by restoring results to those recommended by teachers, Scotland’s education secretary, John Swinney, has said.
Swinney made an emergency statement at Holyrood yesterday afternoon after a furious row erupted last week when the Scottish Qualifications Authority announced it had downgraded 124,000 exam results, moderating the recommendations of school teachers in nearly a quarter of all awards.
Swinney also faces a damaging no-confidence vote instigated by Scottish Labour and backed by the Scottish Tories.
The minority Scottish National party government needs the Scottish Greens’ six votes to ensure Swinney survives.
Earlier yesterday, a Scottish Greens spokesman said the party’s education spokesman, Ross Greer, believed Swinney would reverse nearly all the exam downgrading after the Scottish Greens warned they could support Labour’s no-confidence motion.
“We’ve had some positive noises and indications, but we don’t know for absolute sure,” he said.
Nicola Sturgeon, the first minister, said on Monday her government now accepted they had made a serious error.
Despite consistently defending the SQAs handling of the debacle last week, Sturgeon indicated Swinney would change many awards.
“That burden has not fallen equally across society,” she said.
“Despite our best intentions, I do acknowledge that we did not get this right. I’m not prepared to have this year’s cohort of pupils, particularly from deprived communities, thinking that their hard work at school doesn’t count or the system is determined to be against them.”
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