Invigilation exception requests: Functional Skills | NCFE | NCFE

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Invigilation exception requests: Functional Skills

One of the main aims of the Functional Skills reform programme is to raise the status of Functional Skills alongside other equivalent maths and English qualifications. As a result, there is now a more direct focus on the invigilation requirements of Functional Skills external assessments to maintain the quality and rigour of this qualification.

Please note: Unless approved below, Functional Skills tutors are no longer permitted to be directly involved in either the administration or invigilation of Functional Skills external assessments in their subject area.

Following these changes, NCFE has made a webinar available to assist centres in determining whether or not an invigilation exception request is required. Please familiarise yourself with the content of this webinar as you may be able to maintain or modify your current processes without the need for an exception application.

Additionally, for those centres who are unable to send invigilators into workplaces because of remote locations and/or Covid restrictions, we have now produced an invigilation training resource to enable employees within workplaces to be upskilled so that invigilation can be maintained safely and securely in these areas.

We have worked closely with Ofqual and the Federation of Awarding Bodies to arrive at a set of common principles that demonstrate how we meet our regulatory requirements for the invigilation of Level 1 and Level 2 Functional Skills external assessments in maths and English.

Ofqual also published an additional statement on Functional Skills invigilation, which you can view on their blog. The document explains how Ofqual has agreed that awarding organisations will decide where to allow exceptions on the grounds of:

  • restrictions within the centre on the grounds of security or safeguarding, or
  • where an assessment is conducted at the candidate’s workplace and an assessment centre is not available locally, or
  • the remote location of the candidate’s workplace/assessment location, or
  • as part of a reasonable adjustment request for a specific learner.

If this applies to your situation and you believe that on occasion you may require an exception, you must now complete the form below for every external assessment booking to which this exception will apply, describing your situation and the actions you will take to mitigate any risk to live assessment materials or potential conflicts of interest.

Please note: An exception request must be submitted at least 10 working days before any exceptions are applied in an NCFE external assessment. An exception request must only be submitted when all other options to administer an assessment in line with the new requirements have been exhausted.

What happens next?

Upon submitting your request, you’ll be directed to an acknowledgement page to confirm your request has been received. We’ll respond within 3 working days to confirm the outcome of your request.

Please complete the form below to apply for an individual assessment exceptions approval.

Invigilation exception requests: Functional Skills

Centre / contact details:

Exception details

Reason for centre exception from the invigilation requirements for Functional Skills external assessments: Please tick all that apply below:

How will you mitigate potential risks and conflicts of interest? In order to consider a request we require you to declare and consistently implement a minimum of one mitigating factor from the list below:


I have been authorised to submit this form on behalf of my centre.

The information provided in this application is complete and accurate.

Exceptions will only be applied in assessments meeting the exceptions criteria and after all other options have been exhausted.

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