It’s not just students who are judged by exam results, and many teachers feel the strain of comparing theirs to colleagues’ and other schools’ achievements. This week the big story will be exam results. There will be pictures of jubilant students celebrating their A* grades and smiling headteachers basking in the reflected glory. Sadly, there will also be teachers and leaders who do not feel like celebrating. Instead, they will be analysing the results and comparing themselves with their peers and colleagues, as well as thinking about the difficult conversations that lie ahead of them.
How important are exams for teachers and students? There is a lot of uncertainty, apprehension and so much riding on the information in those brown envelopes. The exam results are immediate, tangible evidence of success or failure for students.However, they have also come to be the benchmark for schools, an annual snapshot of how the school is performing and are taken very seriously by parents, local authorities and the government so there is considerable pressure on schools to achieve good results year on year.
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