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Tuesday, 21 August, 2001, 20:35 GMT 21:35 UK
Exams body 'sorry' over grading error
exam candidates
The exams body is investigating the mistake
Northern Ireland's examinations authority has revealed that about 1,000 GCSE results are wrong.

The results for Home Economics were received by pupils on Tuesday.

However, the Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment said the grade boundaries for AS levels instead of GCSE were used by mistake.

Although 140 pupils will go up from grade A to A*, about 800 will get bad news.


They have actually earned grades lower than those printed on their results slips.

It shouldn't have happened and we take full responsibility

Gavin Boyd, CCEA Chief Executive

The exams body has apologised for the mistake and said an investigation was being carried out into how it happened.

CCEA Chief Executive Gavin Boyd said: "My staff are devastated but we realise that the people who will be most disappointed by this are the candidates themselves."

He said most pupils would only be marked down by one grade.

"The biggest movement will be out of the Grade A category," he said.

Gavin Boyd: Apology
Gavin Boyd: Apology

However, some candidates will drop from an A to a C, with others dropping from a B to D grade.

Mr Boyd added: "I'm not going to put up any excuses. It shouldn't have happened and we take full responsibility.

"It hasn't happened in any other subjects."

The CCEA said the investigation would take in 24 members of staff.

Mr Boyd said: "I don't rule out any disciplinary action, but I am waiting for the results of the investigation."

Pupils should know their real result by lunchtime on Wednesday.

Almost 30,000 Northern Ireland students have received the results of their GCSE exams.

Once again girls have netted most of the top grades.

The CCEA said the results painted a picture of steady improvement.

Top grades

Overall, the number of pupils who got the top Grade A* has gone up to 7%, with girls claiming the lion's share.

Nine per cent of them got an A* grade, compared to 5.3% of boys.

Girls achieved 10% more than boys in the two top grades.

But this only represents about 70% of results, with the rest done through the English examining bodies.

The CCEA results are published two days ahead of the English boards.

CCEA Chief Executive Gavin Boyd:
"My staff are devastated by this"
BBC NI's education correspondent Maggie Taggart:
"Pupils should know their real results on Wednesday"
BBC NI education correspondent Maggie Taggart:
"The CCEA has been dogged by mistakes"

Go to BBC Student EssentialsExam results?
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See also:

21 Aug 01 | Northern Ireland
Red letter day for GCSE students
30 Mar 01 | Education
Concern over new A-level results
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