Leaving Cert exam upgrades - Lesson to learn

Leaving Cert exam upgrades - Lesson to learn

The number of upgrades in marks awarded to Leaving Certificate candidates has more than doubled this year,compared to last.

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Almost 3,000 individual grades, awarded in this year’s exams, have been revised upwards during the 2019 appeals process, compared to 1,450 last year.

That is worrying for a number of reasons.

Firstly, it represents a doubling, in the space of a year, of the number of upgrades allowed, in itself an astonishing increase, which points to systemic failings and cannot be attributed in all cases to simple human error.

Secondly, it brings into question the credibility of the State Examinations Commission’s marking system, as it applies not only to this year’s exam, but to ones in the past and the future.

Most importantly, it points to serious worry for those students who are due to sit the Leaving Cert exam next June.

If the commission does not address the situation in a competent and timely manner, it deserves an F grade, but, perhaps, they can appeal this before the scrutiny of an Oireachtas committee.

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