Almost 8,000 higher Leaving Cert grades issued in error

Concern that high grades ‘squeezed out’ some students from their CAO choices

Students with these higher grades will not be downgraded as exam candidates are not penalised for such errors.

Students with these higher grades will not be downgraded as exam candidates are not penalised for such errors.

 

Almost 8,000 Leaving Cert grades issued this year were higher than they should have been due to coding errors in the calculated grades process, according to new figures.

In addition to Saturday’s announcement that 6,100 students received lower grades than they should have, the Department of Education confirmed on Sunday evening that about 7,943 grades were higher than they were supposed to be.

Students with these higher grades will not be downgraded on the basis that it is established practice that exam candidates are not penalised for such errors.

However, the disclosure of the volume of higher grades issued in error will likely spark controversy among students who fear they were unfairly squeezed out of their chosen CAO course by others with inflated grades.

The department was unable to say how many students received these higher grades in error.

Solidarity TD Mick Barry has called on the Minister for Education to disclose how many students may have lost out on college places due to higher grades issued in error.

The total number of grades issued in error has now reached almost 15,000.

Sample of coding

Meanwhile, it has emerged that an independent review of errors in the calculated grading process which led to thousands of students receiving the wrong results focused only on a sample of coding used in the process.

The disclosure has prompted calls from the Labour Party for a full, comprehensive and independent inquiry to establish if there are further errors which may affect other students.

The department confirmed that US firm ETS has been commissioned to review “aspects of the code”, in order to provide reassurance that the model was operating as intended.

The spokeswoman said the department and Minister had committed to a comprehensive review of the calculated grades process when the process was completed.