New pressure for 'default passes'

17th August 2001 at 01:00
THE "default pass" proposal to ease the transfer of data between schools and colleges and the SQA is once again on the agenda.

Both Michael O'Neill, director of education in North Lanarkshire, and George Haggarty, spokesman for the Headteachers' Association of Scotland, suggest schools would benefit from passing on to the SQA only details of candidates who failed, postponed or withdrew from internally assessed units. All others - two-thirds - would be assumed by the SQA to have passed.

But Mr Haggarty accepts the system would have to be refined as several thousand pieces of information were apparently missing this year.

The SQA ruled out introducing the system after carrying out a risk assessment. In the event, the authority was able at the end of May and the beginning of June to manage a large volume of data quickly and now feels confident it can do so again without changing the system.

Schools and colleges, however, argue their burdens would be considerably reduced by the default pass mechanism. Mr Haggarty also believes there is less need for repeated checks on data now that the system appears to be effective.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today