# Maths Teachers

Discussion in 'Scotland - education news' started by uberman, Aug 26, 2011.

1. ### ubermanNew commenter

Any of you out there?
I was just wondering if you had an opinion on the thresholds for the Higher exam? From what we can work out, the SQA are keeping the percentage of pupils passing at around 72%, hence the 55% for a grade C. However, something like 78% of those who sit Physics and Chemistry passed, and in one of these subjects I'm pretty sure it was 43% for a grade C.
To us, it's a shocking state of affairs - we have 7 pupils who are sitting between 50 and 55% and walked away with a D. The SQA's system of having a certain proportion of each sitting passing an exam doesn't take account of whether a year group are particularly good or bad.
The other thing to think about is whether the SQA are admitting that the exam was 'too easy'. How many of us have had appeals turned down for something similar with prelims?
Anyway, rant over. Happy Friday everyone!

2. ### ubermanNew commenter

Any of you out there?
I was just wondering if you had an opinion on the thresholds for the Higher exam? From what we can work out, the SQA are keeping the percentage of pupils passing at around 72%, hence the 55% for a grade C. However, something like 78% of those who sit Physics and Chemistry passed, and in one of these subjects I'm pretty sure it was 43% for a grade C.
To us, it's a shocking state of affairs - we have 7 pupils who are sitting between 50 and 55% and walked away with a D. The SQA's system of having a certain proportion of each sitting passing an exam doesn't take account of whether a year group are particularly good or bad.
The other thing to think about is whether the SQA are admitting that the exam was 'too easy'. How many of us have had appeals turned down for something similar with prelims?
Anyway, rant over. Happy Friday everyone!

3. ### misterroyNew commenter

standard grade technological studies requires 60% to get a grade 2. Last time I looked 27% always got a 1.

4. ### gnulinuxOccasional commenter

The SQA should not be allowed to get away with manipulating the exam results data. If a candidate has satisfied the criteria for an A in whatever the subject is, then that should be the end of the matter. When they (the SQA) manipulate the post exam data, they are almost certainly covering their tracks; covering up for mistakes in exam questions (which they will never admit to); covering up for mistakes in marking the exams (they will not let outsiders see the marked scripts).
If teachers, pupils and parents could see what goes on behind the scenes when exams are marked they would no doubt be appalled. The fact that the whole process is deliberately made essentially secret says it all.

Later on in the session PT's etc. will be asked by SMT's to explain their exam results. Under the current system they can never do this properly of course because whatever the pupils got at the time of marking their script will not be what the pupil and school have been told because of this post exam data manipulation. Teachers don't get to see the pupils marked scripts, so they can never tell what they actually wrote or how it was marked. Ever heard of the term 'rogue marker'? (Someone who is an incompetent marker or perhaps just wants to take the money and run).

What we need in a decent exam system is transparency. What we have is a very long way from that.

5. ### gnulinuxOccasional commenter

Scripts could be made available for a fee. The rogue marker 'theory' as you put it has been around for years - and it has come from other markers i.e. insiders who know that it is NOT a theory but a fact.

It is impossible for schools to challenge results without the evidence. The SQA has that evidence but will not hand it over to schools. Why not?????? What do they have to hide????

6. ### misterroyNew commenter

The ultimate bit of feedback is not available to us, the exam scripts. Remember when you did not even get the marking guidelines? It would not cost much to deliver a pallet to each school with all the papers on it, then the interested ones could pick through the papers.

7. ### GuessWhoOccasional commenter

Having marked SQA papers for many years I can reveal it is a dictatorship and not a democracy.
I've been at meetings where markers have agreed that that the marking scheme is flawed however the chief examiners and their lackeys pay no heed to valid concerns and basically refuse to alter flawed marking schemes....in particular when allocating marks to incorrect but perhaps valid alternative solutions.

8. ### CheesyWotsits

Agree. Attended a session where, in the interests of showing "openness", an SQA marker was going through last years exam, complete with marking guidlines and typical answers. I, along with others was totally shocked to find that he refused to concede that a (maths) question which was so easy (ie badly written) it could be solved mentally should be given full marks if the candidate just wrote the answer. He got redder and redder, but refused to admit that the question was bad, refused to take our concerns back to the SQA and lost his audience soon after that.
I really can't understand how the question got past quality assurance, but I'm even more amazed that no-one picked up on it in the markers meeting.

9. ### GuessWhoOccasional commenter

One of my points was that concerns re marking schemes are raised at markers meetings but are totally ignored!