guardian article about same issue in scotland.
"The SQA said today that although text answers were considered "inappropriate" and would not be eligible for top marks, pupils would still be given credit if expressing a valid idea.
A spokesman for the board said: "We give credit for the idea a candidate is expressing. But you would get more marks for that idea in perfect English than you would if you used text language.
"It would be much too harsh not to give credit for knowledge and attainment that is expressed in bad language."
Sounds sensible to me. Should a person who knows something about a subject but expresses it poorly really be marked the same as someone who knows nothing about the subject?