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HSC Fail - NSW investigates how Higher School Certificate results published early

January 23, 2023

Original Article:

An investigation is underway into how students’ Higher School Certificate results were published early.

New South Wales HSC graduates were able to see their “preliminary” results on Saturday morning. The results will not be officially released until Thursday.

The link on the NSW Education Standards Authority website was removed after about an hour. The authority has since apologised.

“For a short period this morning, some students were able to access a preliminary set of 2022 HSC results,” a spokesperson said.

“NESA is investigating the cause of the issue and sincerely apologises for any inconvenience caused."

“Final HSC results will be released this Thursday.”

It wasn’t the first time NESA has had to apologise for accidentally revealing results early.

The 2021 HSC distinguished achievers’ list was released three days early. It was “uploaded in error”, NESA said at the time.

And, in 2019, the wrong date was printed on students’ HSC certificates – it said they were “issued by NESA without alteration or erasure on 14th December 2017”.

The NSW government blamed “human error” for that incident.

The NSW education minister, Sarah Mitchell, said the accidental reveal of the 2022 results was “an IT issue”.

“I’m very disappointed this has happened and have asked NESA for an explanation as to how this occurred,” she said. “They have assured me that the error has been fixed and everything is on track for HSC results to be released on Thursday.”

The deputy Labor leader, Prue Car, said the Perrottet government had “dropped the ball on what should be a well-established process”.

“This bungle has just added unnecessary stress on students, many of whom have no certainty if they were shown their final results or not,” she said.

“The NSW government should give certainty to HSC students today and ensure all students can see their results equally.”

Mitchell accused Car of adding to “student stress and confusion”.

Word quickly spread on social media when the site went live, with students sharing stories of how they went, instructing others on how to access the site, or sharing how they felt about missing out on seeing their own results before the site was removed.

“When NESA leaked the ATARs this morning but I woke up too late so now I get to be happy for five more days not knowing my atrocious score,” TikTok user Polina wrote. (The results were leaked, but not the Australian tertiary admission ranking).

Many were confused about whether the results were real.

“I don’t want to get my hopes up because they’re pretty good,” one student said on Facebook, while another said “I got my results but it doesn’t even seem real”.


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