How to access 'special consideration' for students affected by COVID-19 during Year 12 exams

Year 12 students at Sydney Secondary College in Sydney, Tuesday, November 9, 2021. Source: AAP

Final year high school students have faced a tough couple of years with the COVID-19 pandemic affecting not only school life but family life as well. As final year exams are underway, there are options for authorities to consider special circumstances for students.

New South Wales

There are a few options for HSC students sitting written exams in 2021:

COVID-19 Special Consideration Program - The COVID-19 Special Consideration Program is available to recognise where COVID-19 has caused substantial disruption or disadvantage to HSC students in their preparation for or completion of the exam.

It includes HSC written exams, and spoken language exams, and most major projects.

The Illness and Misadventure Program is for students who suffer illness or misadventure that prevents them from attending an exam, including requirements to self-isolate due to COVID-19. 

For example it includes influenza, an asthma attack, or a cut hand, but does not include attending cultural events or holidays.

Students in Yrs 2-11 return to school at Fairvale High School in Sydney, Monday, October 25, 2021.
Students in Yrs 2-11 return to school at Fairvale High School in Sydney, Monday, October 25, 2021.
AAP

In the case of testing positive for COVID-19 or being asked to self-isolate, students must obtain evidence such as a medical certificate and/or correspondence from NSW Health that states you need to self-isolate.

There are also two other types of special consideration:

The Educational Access Scheme aims to help students that have been significantly impacted during Year 11 and/or Year 12 to receive an offer for university. Applying for EAS will be relevant for you if you are completing the HSC in this year or the next. 

Disability Provisions are practical arrangements designed to help students who couldn’t otherwise make a fair attempt on an assessment or exam.

You can find more information here.

Victoria

Last year, the Victorian government offered students special consideration to take into account the impacts of COVID reflecting in a student's ATAR ranking in what it called an 'unprecedented year' of school. 

Special consideration will also apply to Victorian senior students this year.

The Consideration of Educational Disadvantage is used to calculate VCE scores.  It applies to every student completing one or more VCE or scored VCE VET Unit 3–4 sequences in 2021, including Year 10 and 11 students.

It restores a student's results to where they would have been without the disruptions that have occurred throughout the year and makes sure that final VCE results are valid and fair for all students.

In October 2021, Education Minister Sarah Mitchell said it was “well and truly time” students come back to the classroom after months of being taught online.
In October 2021, Education Minister Sarah Mitchell said it was “well and truly time” students come back to the classroom after months of being taught online.
AAP

Guidance for students completing the 2021 VCE written examinations in other languages can be found here.

If you're a VCE or VCAL student and have a query you can email or call the Victorian Curriculum Assessment Authority on 1800 134 197.

Other states

Queensland: For information on the Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE), call the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority on 1300 193 173.

South Australia: Special provisions in South Australia support students who have a disability, or have been affected by misadventure or personal circumstances beyond their control. You can contact the South Australian Certificate of Education on +61 8 8115 4700.

Western Australia: There are special provisions for year 12 students through the Schools and Curriculum Standards Authority

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