Lammy warning over A* introduction

By politics.co.uk staff

Skills minister David Lammy is to warn teachers risk hurting students’ prospects if they fail to predict them the new A* grade, it has been reported.

At a conference of admissions experts today he will highlight the fact that some elite universities, including Cambridge, have said they will not accept students who do not have an A* grade.

“This goes back to the importance of fairness and transparency in retaining public confidence,” broadsheets reported Mr Lammy as planning to say.

“That confidence will be undermined – and the sometimes corrosive debate on widening participation inflamed – if talented young people are rejected, only to find that their peers are accepted as near misses, thanks to more optimistic predictions but not achievement.”

He will press the need for “actual achievement” to be rewarded and say the current system’s reliance on predicted grades means “we – and you – need assurances that A* grades can be predicted accurately”.

The new A* grade, already in existence at GCSE level, will be introduced at A-level from results in 2010.