Confirmation on how the new reformed combined science is handled

We have received several enquires as to why combined science only counts as 1 grade towards the legacy/additional measure 5A*-C. We approached the DfE and asked:

“Page 54 in the latest Progress 8/Accountability guide states that you are replacing the 5A*-C measure with a new 5 x grade 4 count (to be reported as an Additional Measure).
Please can you tell us how the new combined science qualifications will count towards this? For example, will a grade 5-5 count as 1 or 2 towards this figure? Also, how will a grade 4-3 be handled?”

They have replied with the following information:

“Thank you for your recent enquiry regarding the reformed 9 to 1 combined science qualification and how it will count in secondary school performance tables under the reformed thresholds for grade 5 and 4.

The grades for combined science count as one entry for this measure and the grades are not averaged. If a pupil achieves a 5-4 in combined science, they will have achieved the 9-4 threshold. If they achieved a 4-3, then they will not have achieved the 9-4 threshold. Pupils must have achieved a 4-4 or above in combined science for this qualification to count towards this measure.”

4Matrix has always handled combined science in this way and therefore we will not be making any changes.

We understand that in some MIS calculate their Ebacc values differently. They may only require a grade 4 pass for Humanities MFL and Science when it should be a 5. Hence the reason why 4Matrix reporting a lower figure when compared to the results in some MIS.