Backwell School GCSE blunder

STUDENTS at Backwell School have been told they cannot sit a GCSE exam this week because they have not been entered for it.

A letter was sent to parents of more than 100 year 10 science pupils last Friday, apologising for the administration error and promising an immediate investigation.

In the letter head teacher Julian Baldwin said: “We appreciate that your child will be disappointed at this news as students and teachers have been working hard to prepare for the exams.”

Instead the pupils, aged 14 and 15, will take the biology and chemistry tests in school which will be treated as mock exams, with the real papers, set by main exam board AQA, being sat in the summer.

The school has also promised there will be no charge for anyone re-sitting them.

Mr Baldwin added: “We appreciate this will be an additional workload for them but we will put into place a programme of additional science revision sessions within the school day to enable them to be fully prepared.”

He said this would ensure students would be in ‘an even better position’ to take the exams in the summer.

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It is understood the embarrassing blunder came to light when parents of pupils from different secondary schools were discussing the syllabus and timetable.

Mr Baldwin defended the mistake as ‘human error’ but said he would ‘be dealing with’ the colleagues concerned.

He also said he is keen to make sure it does not happen again.

The Station Road school became an academy last year and currently has 1,700 students.

It recorded its best ever results at GCSE in 2011 with more than 83 per cent of the Year 11 students achieving five A*+-C grades.