Academic Year 2020/21

Key stage 4 performance

This is the latest dataNational Statistics
UK statistics authority quality mark
Last updated
See all updates (3)
  1. New data file has been uploaded: KS4 entries by prior attainment band and disadvantage status.

  2. The KS4 national data file has been amended as the arts entries indicators for the 2020/21 time period did not include the correct arts subjects. The KS4 subject timeseries data file has been corrected to include data on five subjects (Arabic, Chinese, Italian, Polish and Urdu) which were incorrectly grouped together under 'Other modern languages' for the 2019/20 time period.

  3. The KS4 subject timeseries data file has been amended as Latin was missed from the 2020/21 time period. The KS4 subject entry level data file has been corrected as the column containing data on grade 7s were not showing the correct figures.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the summer exam series for the 2020/21 academic year was cancelled

Instead, for 2020/21, pupils were only assessed on the content they had been taught for each course. Schools were given flexibility to decide how to assess their pupils’ performance, for example, through mock exams, class tests, and non-exam assessment already completed. GCSE grades were then determined by teachers based on the range of evidence available and they are referred to as teacher-assessed grades, or TAGs. 

This is a different process to that of 2019/20 when pupils were awarded either a centre assessment grade (known as CAGs, based on what the school or college believed the pupil would most likely have achieved had exams gone ahead) or their calculated grade using a model developed by Ofqual - whichever was the higher of the two.

The changes to the way GCSE grades have been awarded over the last two years (with CAGs and TAGs replacing exams) mean 2020/21 pupil attainment data should not be directly compared to pupil attainment data from previous years for the purposes of measuring year on year changes in pupil performance.

Headline facts and figures - 2020/21

Help and support