back to the SchNEWS Home PageON THE VERGE - The Smash EDO Campaign Film
subscribe to receive SchNEWS every week by emailView any SchNEWS back issuesFind out about SchNEWSSearch for contacts and linksVarious guides on how to do direct action etcDetails of previous hot topicsSchMOVIEWS - Short films produced by SchNEWS
The weekly newsletter from Justice? - Brighton's direct action collective

Issue 639 Articles:

Fit for Purpose?

Crap Arrest of the Week

Foreign Bodies


Ark Naked Greed

And Finally


Home | Friday 11th July 2008 | Issue 639

Back to the Full Issue

...AND FINALLY (Issue 639)...

A GCSE student was recently awarded a partial credit score for writing nothing but the words ‘fuck you’ on his English exam paper. The marker, Peter Buckroyd - senior examiner for the Assessment and Qualifications Alliance, a body which grades British high school exams - gave the student 7.5%, saying that it “would be wicked to give it zero because it does show some very basic skills we are looking for, like conveying some meaning and some spelling” and that “it’s better than someone that doesn’t write anything at all. It shows more skills than somebody who leaves the page blank.” Buckroyd said the mark would have been higher if there’d been punctuation – so if only the student had written ‘fuck you!’ instead, the mark would have bumped up to 11%.

Other exam marking bodies weren’t so lateral/post-modern/down-with-the-kids, with Edexcel saying “If the question was ‘Use a piece of Anglo-Saxon English’, they may get a mark, but if they had just written ‘f*** off’, they may get sanctioned.”

It’s a cheap shot to say this is a case of schools dumbing down, and all SchNEWS writers wish that Buckroyd was around when we went through school.



Subscribe to SchNEWS: Send 1st Class stamps (e.g. 10 for next 9 issues) or donations (payable to Justice?). Or £15 for a year's subscription, or the SchNEWS supporter's rate, £1 a week. Ask for "originals" if you plan to copy and distribute. SchNEWS is post-free to prisoners.


SchNEWS, c/o Community Base, 113 Queens Rd, Brighton, BN1 3XG, England
Phone: +44 (0)1273 685913

@nti copyright - information for action - copy and distribute!