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SQA Announcement – National 5, Higher and Advanced Highers

Friday 18th December 2020

SQA Announcement – National 5, Higher and Advanced Highers.

Dear Parent / Carer and Senior Pupil,

Higher and Advanced Higher

As I am sure you are already aware, the Scottish Government announced on 8th December that SQA examinations at both Higher and Advanced Higher levels will not be a part of the certification process this year. 

SQA have written to schools anticipating that the approach to awarding Higher and Advanced Higher qualifications will follow broadly the same model and timeline set for National 5 courses, but with more flexibility around the nature of the learner evidence needed to inform awards.  As and when we have more detailed information, I assure you I will contact you again.


National 5

As you are aware, the Scottish Government announced, in October, that there would be no National 5 examinations this session.  The table below notes the process that the school, Dundee City Council and SQA will go through before this year’s final grades are awarded:

        November 2020 to March 2021

Teachers use guidance and assessment materials to help gather learner evidence.


January – April 2021

SQA requests, reviews and provides feedback on samples of assessment evidence from all schools.


March – May 2021

Teachers continue to use guidance and assessment materials to help gather learner evidence.

Schools and local authorities will work through SQA feedback and carry out their own quality assurance of the provisional results.


By 28th May 2021

Schools submit quality assured provisional results.


June 2021

SQA carries out national check of provisional results and may follow up on any issues with schools and local authorities.


Home Learning

Staff have provided on going work for our young people to support them at home since we have moved to a short period of blended learning.  It is the expectation of staff and the Senior Leadership Team that all tasks will be completed and that pupils will be at the same stage when school recommences on Monday 11 January 2021.  If any pupil is struggling to access any of the materials on Teams they should contact the school as a matter of urgency to ensure that they have caught up with any and all tasks by our return.


Question and Answer session for parents/carers and young people

I fully appreciate that this year’s SQA awarding process is unique given the extremely challenging times we are continuing to live and work in.  With this in mind and to support parents/carers and young people, Mr Black and I will hold a Q&A session in January.  The details of this will be communicated to you on our return from the Christmas holidays.


Certification date

SQA will send final results to all candidates on Tuesday 10th August 2021. Those young people who have signed up for MySQA will receive their results via e mail or text message from 8am that day.


Further information

For more details in relation to SQA’s announcements last week, please click on the following links:


News about National 5 results in 2020-21 – a message for parents and carers - SQA


SQA comments on Deputy First Minister’s decision to cancel Higher and Advanced Higher exams - SQA


NPFS statement on the cancellation of 2020/21 Higher and Advanced Higher Exams and the plans for the delivery of the N5 assessments – National Parent Forum of Scotland


To stay up to date on National Qualifications in 2021, visit


Your sincerely,

Fiona McLagan

Head Teacher