Last reviewed on 5 July 2019
School types: All · School phases: Primary, Secondary
Ref: 31133

It can be a stressful time for schools when pupils don't achieve the results they expect. Understand what to do on results day, and download our list of questions to challenge and support your headteacher at your next meeting.

Our education experts, Brendan Hollyer, David Driscoll and Jane Owens helped us with this article.

On results day

Initial discussion between the chair and the headteacher

The chair of governors should be responsible for discussing the exam results with the headteacher. You should:

  • Ask the headteacher for their thoughts on the results to get a sense of whether the outcomes were expected or not, before asking questions
  • Be honest and focused on supporting and challenging the headteacher rather than trying to tell them what to do
  • Be sympathetic - this will be a difficult time for all school staff
  • Discuss how best to present these results to the rest of the board (for example, including a breakdown of data for individual groups and subjects)

You or your headteacher should communicate the results to the board. Make it clear to the board that the data is unvalidated and some results may change.

At your first meeting after results day