Tuesday, 9 July 2013

UMS Marks

Holidaying children, untroubled by UMS marks.
Does anybody really understand UMS marks? 

My name for them is “Smoke and Mirrors Marks.”

I believe that UMS marks are what is left after the raw percentage of an exam result has been tinkered with and adjusted for this that and the other.

But what This, That and The Other are, I have never discovered. 

If there had been an Exam Board in the Harry Potter books, UMamus is the spell they would have cast over anybody who challenged their decision.

I feel bad that I have never,

a)      as a parent, fully come to grips with understanding them

b)      as a citizen, never led a protest march against them.

I would happily now move on without ever having grasped UMS marks, except that I plan to train as a teacher so must address my personal black hole of ignorance.

If anybody can explain them to me, please leave a comment below.  (Except you, Michael Gove – I’m not sure I want to hear what you have to say!)


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  1. Sorry Clare - they are a mystery to me too! Something taught by a professor of the dark arts I suspect!
    If you do find out then perhaps a couple of blog entries dedicated to enlightening us fellow 'waiting for August 15th' parents would be very useful.

  2. I think Gove touches his UMS mark to call the rest of the DfE ministerial team to him. That or they're the sign his followers will send up when he makes his leadership bid. I'm not really sure.