independent

Monday 21 October 2019

Student gets date for High Court case

Rebecca Carter from Castlebridge
Rebecca Carter from Castlebridge

A High Court case involving a Wexford student who is suing the State Examination Commission (SEC) and legally challenging a decision not to re-check her leaving certificate results before mid-October is to go to full trial next Tuesday.

The matter of Rebecca Carter (18), fromm Ardcolm Drive, Castlebridge, went before the High Court yesterday, for mention, and was put in for full trial to Tuesday with consent from all parties concerned.

The case will be fully opposed on that date by the State Examination Commission.

The decision not to re-check her results until mid-October would effectively cost Ms Carter her place in UCD which will decide its student allocation by the end of this month.

On Tuesday, September 11, Mr Justice Humphreys was told UCD had agreed not to allocate Ms Carter's potential placing until September 30 allowing the court to deal with her judicial review of decisions to-date, relating to her exam results.

Ms Carter is also suing the Central Applications Office which processes applications for undergraduate courses in third level colleges, and UCD in an attempt to restrain the college from refusing her a place on a veterinary medicine course.

The court was told that Ms Carter had repeated her leaving certificate in May this year and received 554 points - just six points short of the required number for veterinary medicine in UCD.

Michael P O'Higgins SC, who appeared with barrister Brendan Hennessy for Ms Carter, told the judge at the initial sitting: 'The points required for the course dropped to 555 in the second round offers and she was then only a point short.'

'She was not satisfied that her results accurately reflected her exam performance and took part in a review in the presence of two teachers,' said Mr O'Higgins.

Mr O'Higgins, who was instructed by Dublin solicitor Eileen McCabe, said the review revealed that in Ms Carter's business exam script the examiner had given her 17, plus 19, plus 30 but had then wrongly totted up the marks to 56 instead of 66. Had the error not occurred her final total points would have surpassed what was required for veterinary medicine.

He told Judge Humphreys in papers submitted to the court that when the error was uncovered Ms Carter and her family contacted the Commission to have matters put right so she could take up her place but was told the Commission could not correct the error until mid-October.

However, if the mistake was not corrected until then she would have to wait until 2019 to commence the course.

'The delay in correcting an obvious totting up error until after the third level places for the year have been allocated is unreasonable, egregious and contrary to common sense,' said Mr O'Higgins.

He said his client and had made exhaustive efforts to resolve the matter.

Wexford People

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