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GCSE and A-level Results – Delays Expected Due to Staff Strikes

GCSE and A-level Results – Delays Expected Due to Staff Strikes

GCSE and A-level Results – Delays Expected Due to Staff Strikes

Staff at exam board AQA intend to go on strike for a third time later this month, including on A-level results day.

The strike is set to take place from Wednesday 17 to Sunday 21 August, with A-level results due to be released on Thursday 18 August. It is feared that this could cause delays in A-level results being released and the same for GCSE results on 25 August.

This will be the third round of strikes by UNISON members at AQA. They previously took action on 29-31 July and will be striking again from 12-15 August.

Will AQA strikes delay A-level and GCSE results?

The strike “could mean delays for students awaiting their GCSE and A-level results” according to UNISON, the UK’s largest union which represents the striking workers. Students, parents and schools attempting to contact AQA about their A-level results could also experience serious disruption, UNISON has claimed.

However, AQA has denied the strike action will affect students. In a statement, AQA said:

“You may have heard that Unison has announced more strike action in August, and we’d like to reassure you that this will not affect schools and students getting their results this summer either.

“Our priority is always to make sure students get the results they deserve on time – and the robust plans that prevented any disruption in July will continue to be effective throughout future strikes.”

Even with this assurance from AQA, it is understandable for students and parents to be concerned about what any delays and disruption could mean.

How would GCSE and A-level delays affect students?

Apart from the added stress and anxiety of having to wait longer for results, there could be a serious problem for students whose results are delayed.

Those students won’t be able to secure their places at sixth form, college or university until they have their results. While this hopefully shouldn’t cause too much of a problem for students who get the results they need, those who don’t get the grades for their first choice place could run into difficulties.

Students who need to rely on their second choice place of further study or that have to go through clearing could be at a significant disadvantage. Places may already have been taken by students who got their results earlier, meaning students forced to wait for their results could lose out.

In the worst case scenario, delays to A-level and GCSE results could, therefore, mean students are left without a place to study or have to take a place somewhere below their expectations. Alternatively, they might need to delay starting their course by a year so they can apply again the following year.

What can students and parents do about GCSE and A-level result delays?

If you experience delays that cause harm to your future education, IBB can help in challenging the Examination Boards.  Your receiving institution can also be challenged if its decisions are unreasonable.

Please contact IBB Law Consultant Salima Mawji for advice on what to do if you are concerned about A-level or GCSE results delays.

Why are exam board staff striking?

AQA staff are striking over pay. The exam board increased pay by 0.6% in 2021, with a further rise of 3% offered this year. However, this is less than a third of the most optimistic measure of inflation (currently 9.4%), with the Bank of England suggesting inflation could go as high as 13% by the autumn.

UNISON ​North West regional manager Vicky Knight said:

“​Employees at AQA are disappointed ​the company will neither talk to them nor ​come back with a realistic pay offer. ​This leaves staff ​with no choice but to escalate their action.

“Disrupting A-Level results day is not a decision ​anyone has take​n lightly. However, AQA staff have been treated appallingly and ​only bold action ​will get their employer to the table.

“AQA ​must come up with a serious offer to prevent any further disruption.”

Consult our expert Education law solicitors

At IBB Law, we are passionate about making sure students get the best outcomes from their education. If you are concerned about the impact of a delay on your or your child’s GCSE or A-level results, we will be happy to advise you on your options.

IBB Law Consultant Salima Mawji has been recognised as one of the UK’s leading experts in education law. We have an excellent track record of helping families to navigate even the most challenging education law issues, so you can be confident that your family is in safe hands.

To book your initial consultation or to find out more about how we can help you, please contact the Education team on educationteam@ibblaw.co.uk or call 0330 175 7620.