Qualifications Wales launches consultation on proposed approach to designating 14-16 qualifications

Qualifications Wales is seeking views from stakeholders on its intended approach to deciding what qualifications can be offered on publicly-funded courses of education or training for learners aged 14-16.

With a new curriculum being taught in schools, Qualifications Wales has published requirements for new National 14-16 Qualifications. These will provide an inclusive, bilingual suite of qualifications from which schools can choose to offer their learners. 

Earlier this year Qualifications Wales published a statement of policy intent which set out its intended approach and rationale for determining which qualifications will be made available as part of the new 14-16 qualifications offer from September 2025.  

As newly reformed GCSEs are taught from 2025, they will replace any publicly funded qualifications that are deemed same or similar. By September 2027, when the full range of the National 14-16 Qualifications suite has been introduced, the majority of other publicly-funded pre-16 qualifications will no longer be available to learners.  

Because some qualifications have different purposes to National 14-16 Qualifications, or cater to a small minority of learners, Qualifications Wales will allow awarding bodies to apply for an exemption on the basis that a qualification is able to meet a limited set of criteria. 

Qualifications Wales welcomes responses to its consultation on proposed exemption criteria for awarding bodies, as well as other factors and evidence it should consider when deciding to make exemptions to its policy intent. 

Jo Richards, Executive Director of Regulation at Qualifications Wales, said: 

“This consultation provides an opportunity for stakeholders to share their views on Qualifications Wales’ proposed approach to designating 14-16 qualifications from 2025 onwards. Your feedback is important to us and will support the successful transition to the new National 14-16 Qualifications.” 

This consultation will be open for 12 weeks until Tuesday 14 May 2024. To take part in the consultation, you will need to register on Qualifications Wales’s Have Your Say engagement platform. Once registered, you can respond to the proposals online by completing this survey