Labour leaders in one of the areas most impacted by A-Level downgrades has called for the Government’s Education Minister to stand down amid ongoing A-Level chaos.

Olwyn Gunn, County Durham’s portfolio holder for education, criticised the silence from Gavin Williamson’s office, following the scandalous downgrading of 40% of A-Level results.

“This Government used an algorithm that actively sought to penalise students who live or study in poorer areas over the experience and knowledge of dedicated and hardworking teachers.” Said Cllr Gunn. “The message from the Education Minister seems to be, “if you can afford a private education, you’ll get good grades. If you can’t, you won’t!” – that is not acceptable.

“Then, after days of silence from Westminster and dismay for those affected, we finally get a rushed message that students will receive predicted grades after all. What is going on in the Department of Education? Where is the clarity and certainty for students and universities?

“The fact that students, teachers and others passionate about the education system in this country are prepared to take to the streets in Newcastle to protest during a pandemic is a clear demonstration of the level of frustration and disgust at the way the Conservative Government has let down young people.

“This demonstration will allow those affected to vent their anger at a Government that has failed them at every turn – a Government that locked down late, allowed staff to flout quarantine regulations, made opening pubs a priority over opening schools and tried to downgrade almost half of A-level students due to where they live or study.

“Labour stands with everyone impacted by this cruel and unjust process and the Minister must do what no other Tory cabinet member seems capable of – apologise and stand down from a post he is not fit to hold.”

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