Veggie GCSE student’s mum’s anger after teen is given 1 for criticising halal meat in RS exam – The Sun

THE FURIOUS mum of a vegetarian teen accused of being “racist” in a GCSE exam is calling for answers after her daughter was given a 1 in her results today.

Abigail Ward, 16, was disqualified from her OCR Religious Studies and Philosophy exam after saying she thought halal meat was “absolutely disgusting”


Her school, Gildredge House school in Eastbourne, East Sussex, appealed the decision – saying that Abigail held her views because she is a vegetarian, not because she is Islamaphobic.

The disqualification was quickly reversed by OCR who accepted their original interpretation had been "inaccurate".

But when Abigail opened her results this morning, the schoolgirl was shocked to discover she had been given a 1 in the exam – one grade above a fail.

Her mum Layla, 36, said this result “doesn’t tally” with the rest of her results, as she passed everything else and achieved two 6s, three 4s and one 3.

She told The Sun: “She is happy with her results, and has more than enough to do her A-levels next year.

“The exam has a totally different grade to all her other results, so even though they took back the disqualification I don’t think they’ve been very fair.

“A couple of teachers at the school have said you should be suing the exam board, and I will be seeking legal advice into this.

“I want to know who marked the paper and what is going to be done about it.

“I don’t know why they’ve marked her down like this. Maybe their personal beliefs came into it. Maybe not I don’t know.”

I think it’s disgusting, it just goes to show what it’s like nowadays, you can’t have any freedom of speech over fears of offending someone.

 

Despite Layla's concerns, OCR have insisted they think are "confident the result is accurate and the issue about comments had no impact on the marking."

Theatre nurse Layla added that she was ‘really proud’ of Abigail, and despite growing up with a heart condition, the teenager has been the model student.

She said: “She’s not had detention once in her whole life, she’s not loud and keeps herself to herself.

“Abby was born with a heart condition and had surgery when she was younger.

“She’s been in hospital over the past couple of weeks after having lots of arrhythmia, and I don’t think this whole situation would have helped.”

She continued: “It’s a religious studies and philosophy exam, and philosophy is all about opinions and debating.

“Abby is not someone who will follow the crowd, if she believes in something then she will voice her opinion.

“I think it’s disgusting, it just goes to show what it’s like nowadays, you can’t have any freedom of speech over fears of offending someone.

“It annoys me because even if you don’t agree with halal meat, it does not make you racist.

“I’m not even a vegetarian and I don’t agree with it. Abby has been a veggie since primary school and is really strict, she won’t even have sweets with gelatin in them.”

An OCR spokesperson told The Sun: "Students’ exam results are confidential, however we can confirm that we have provided a copy of the student’s exam script to the school.

"We have also had a senior examiner look at this script again. We’re confident the result is accurate and the issue about comments had no impact on the marking.

"If any student is not happy about their exam results, there are a range of services we offer they can use to query the result."


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