Soft-hearted examiners are awarding pupils extra marks to give them top-grade passes in GCSEs and A-levels, it is revealed on Friday.
Glenys Stacey, the chief executive of exams regulator Ofqual, said examiners judging appeals against borderline grades were only “human beings” and look for reasons to give pupils extra marks if it could have a major influence on their future.
She was speaking as Ofqual published the findings of its inquiry into exam marking. The report revealed a massive increase in appeals on the C/D grade borderline at GCSE, which can have a significant influence on whether a pupil goes on into the sixth-form and the school’s overall reputation.
Overall, the number of appeals has risen from just one per cent in 2009 to 2.3 per cent in 2013.
Ms Stacey said the borderline appeals represented a “one-way bet” for schools, because if a pupil was just a few marks off the higher grade it was unlikely they would go down a grade after a remark.