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Increase in SQA Malpractice cases

Discussion in 'Scotland - education news' started by micgbanks, Jun 22, 2019.

  1. micgbanks

    micgbanks Occasional commenter

    Big increase in SQA malpractice cases over the past 2/3 years.

    Markers for SQA assignments at N5/H seen to have been told to out any possible malpractice and that includes situations which are perfectly explainable. Inexperienced markers creating SQA malpractice cases in schools with very little justification.

    Example. Very experienced teacher pulled into SQA malpractice investigation by HT because pupil started an assignment. Wrote first page, started again and completed the investigation. Then handed in the completed assignments with 2 first pages. Teacher did not look at any of the assignments as per the SQA guidelines. Bundled them up and sent them off to SQA.

    Fast forward a few weeks......pulled into an SQA investigation with HT since evidence of cheating was highlighted by a marker. Did the pupil bring in the first page to copy? Kids interviewed, FH involved. Class teacher stressed to the max. All SQA conditions proven to have been followed and case dropped but HT annoyed with class teacher and asking why were these not checked? Well because SQA guidelines prohibit that!

    The assignments are a waste of time. 20% of the final exam and pupils can get a tutor to effectively write it for them. Other pupils who don't have such access are disadvantaged.

    Teachers are being increasingly pulled into SQA malpractice cases through no fault of their own. Although there are still some who either by themselves or through SLT pressure bend the rules.

    Why not get rid of the assignments. Use the needless 30 minutes added to the N5/H exams to test the assignment skills. Much fairer for the pupils and much less hassle for the teacher.
  2. bigjimmy2

    bigjimmy2 Lead commenter

    Couldn't agree more.

    If you go on to the GTCS site you'll see disciplinary cases related to the Assignment (haven't been on recently but they were last time I looked).

    Assignments are an utter waste of time and are open to abuse from so many angles. Thank fl_ck we don't have to mark them.
    Marisha, micgbanks and autoq like this.
  3. davieee

    davieee Occasional commenter

    I know of someone who was involved in a malpractice investigation recently. It could have been avoided if the SQA had looked at their database regarding ASN pupils.
  4. Effinbankers

    Effinbankers Lead commenter

    That is spot on. I've had colleagues pulled up for absolute nonsense saying that the candidate should have been allowed to do this or that. At the end of the day it's the pupil's work, you can't blame the teacher (unless they have stupidly given them a draft to copy)

    Marisha, autoq and micgbanks like this.
  5. cochrane1964

    cochrane1964 New commenter

    Agreed. I follow the guidelines to the letter to the point where pupils complain about the lack of help. Since the new Nationals I've been involved in 2 'malpractice' cases involving things that I could not check. Still…very stressful and in each case the senior manager tried their best to be formal but supportive yet it was still very stressful. BTW - totally cleared in both because I had followed procedures to the letter and this was confirmed by my Faculty Head and the pupils. Phew…

    In general though, many of us resent the fact that certain demographics seem to be allowed to flaunt the rules while the rest of us are scrutinised to the nth degree.

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