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Irish apathy greets exam script move

STUDENTS in Ireland were allowed to see their marked exam scripts for the first time this week - but most didn't bother.

It was predicted that the move would cause chaos but instead there was an apathetic response. The Irish experience has been watched closely on this side of the water where the Government is considering a similar scheme.

Instead of the 50 per cent or more expected to see how their answers had been marked, only 10-20 per cent of Irish students booked into the special viewing sessions last weekend.

And many then failed to turn up. The country's 800 secondary schools reported that only a handful of pupils took up the offer.

The scripts were available for 19 out of the 30 Leaving Certificate subjects. Next year it is intended to allow access to all the scripts.

Various reasons were put forward for the poor take-up. The Association of Secondary Teachers Ireland, the main teachers' union, said it showed most students felt their scripts were marked fairly.

Others thought it was because many had received the university or college offers that they wanted. Others attributed it to the growing exodus of young people who head off for a sunshine holiday once they get their college offers.

Pat Keating, head of the up-market Christian Brothers College in Monkstown, Co Dublin, said that only eight out of 77 former Leaving Certificate students had asked to see their scripts. One of them had done extraordinarily well and wanted to see why the markers were so generous to him.

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