No more exams compromised by cheating seminars – but inquiry goes on

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No more January GCSE exam papers will be withdrawn after a probe into examiners sharing “inappropriate” information with teachers about content.

Ofqual last month said an information and communications technology (ICT) paper set by WJEC, the Welsh exam board, had been compromised and would be withdrawn to protect its “integrity and security”.

The move came in the wake of allegations that examiners had been secretly advising teachers on how to boost GCSE and A-level results. An urgent report by Ofqual found that, at a WJEC seminar on part of a GCSE ICT course, attendees were told which topics pupils would be assessed on.

Around 450 pupils were due to sit the paper this month –the regulator said it would be amended and pupils will take it in early March.

Ofqual said no further exam papers scheduled for January will be withdrawn as a result of investigations into teacher seminars run by exam boards. Ofqual also instructed boards to review their seminar and support material.

Chief executive Glenys Stacey said: “As no further evidence of January papers being compromised has come to light, all exams will take place as scheduled. This does not mean, however, that our investigations on these issues are complete.”

Ofqual said it will launch a public consultation on Monday.