GCSE attainment gap widens for disadvantaged pupils and students with SEND

The attainment gap between both pupils eligible for free school meals (FSM) and those with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and their peers has increased during the Covid-19 pandemic, analysis of GCSE results shows. As teacher-assessments led to a record number of top 7 and 8 grades being handed out, the gap between pupils eligible for FSM and their non-eligible peers has increased by 0.12 of a grade since 2019, Ofqual analysis shows. This means the attainment gap between disadvantaged children and their more affluent peers has widened by 2.27 percentage points when looking at the grade 7 and above and 1.33 percentage points at grade 4 and above. For pupils with SEND, the gap between them and peers without SEND has increased by two percentage points. Read more.