The (second) Great Sussex Results Scandal

huddersfield-railway-station-waiting-room-sign[1]After July’s “sorry we didn’t release your exam results on time but we had to check them for accuracy” incident (try that excuse when handing in an essay 48 hours late), Sussex’s Student Progress & Assessment Office has been caught out once again.

Students who had resit their summer exams in August didn’t receive their results until 16 August – the day that teaching started for the new year. Since the results would dictate whether or not they would be admitted back to the University, the last-minute release required them to make commitments that they weren’t sure they could keep: eg. signing tenancy agreements and applying for student loans.

It also meant that they suffered uncertainty regarding timetabling, module choices and the possibility of having to repeat the entire year.

But a little birdie has passed me a copy of an email sent to students in the School of Life Sciences in this position, which read in part:

The Life Sciences Examination Board has agreed that our students need to know as soon as possible what the outcome was so that they can plan for the academic year which starts on Thursday. We have therefore agreed as a School to informally email you your result.

[…] Students in other Schools are unlikely to have received their results yet.

One can’t help wondering why the University Assessment Office didn’t release all of the results as soon as they were ready, given how important they were to individual students.

Well I can’t help wondering, anyway.

Badger of shame

Environment secretary Owen ‘upsides to climate change’ Paterson has been in the news again this week, this time explaining why the badger cull has had disappointing results so far. Here’s what he said:

text3026The cunning devils! I had no idea they were into football at all…

A legend is Bourne

Ms Bourne defends her decision to buy every Sussex Police officer a toy sonic screwdriver
Ms Bourne, 48, defends her decision to buy every Sussex Police officer a toy sonic screwdriver

Sussex police tzar Katy Bourne was trying to improve her public profile last week. The BBC aired a documentary about her work, and showed clip after laughable clip – I strongly recommend this video! – of Katy introducing herself to members of the public who had no clue who she was.

She got quite testy with a man in Horsham who claimed that “nobody voted” for her, and even resorted to buying a TARDIS just so children would agree to speak to her in the street.

The documentary was such a success that the BBC are going to be producing a full series of footage of her ‘who the hell are you’ encounters. Coming soon to a screen near you: the first question. The question that must never be answered, hidden in plain sight. The question she’s been running from all her life.

katy bourne doctor who

Nobel for the wicked

Putin on the Ritz: Vlad the Not-an-Impaler
Putin on the Ritz: Vlad the Not-an-Impaler

The 2013 Nobel Prizes were awarded this week. Russia’s Vladimir Putin narrowly missed out on the Nobel Peace Prize, though I can’t say I was too astonished.

In the end, the award went to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, which has done more than 15 years of sterling work researching, inspecting for and destroying stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction, most recently by disarming Assad’s Syrian regime of their nerve gases.

And how did The Telegraph graciously describe this well-deserved recognition?

assadsituationRemind me how that makes any sense?

Swiss national leaders react with anger to claims of ski-slope apartheid

SKILIFT-CARMENNA-2[1]Government officials in Switzerland reacted angrily today after North Korea accused them of “a serious human rights abuse” for refusing to sell them ski-lift equipment.

Last night, the North Korea Solidarity Campaign called for a full trade boycott of Switzerland, although they quickly realised that this would make it even more difficult for them to get their hands on some Swiss ski-lifts.

This morning, the neutral Alpine country’s Brigadier Hans Acrossthesea told reporters, “What outrageous double standards! Rather than demonising Switzerland, why not look at other, worse regimes such as Norway and Sweden? They also refused to sell ski-lifts to the North Koreans, but you don’t find people calling for a boycott of those countries.”

Brig. Acrossthesea, who is head of the Swiss Army, has four different types of knife instead of arms, and a pair of scissors protruding from his back.

Honest injun

One of my university courses is about Indian politics, and we’ve been encouraged to keep up with Indian news. I was therefore fascinated to learn that this week, police confiscated “fifteen kilogramme gold biscuits” from a tax-evasion suspect, and “acting on a tip-off, they nabbed him.”

For other examples of Indian news written in 1940s English – including an astonishing piece of journalism about an aeroplane that took off twenty minutes late – check out the 2011 gabrielinindia blog here.

sussex university senate minutes leaked

Five of the best

Send all your lawsuits to…
In tonight’s episode, the Sussex Assessment Office became the late Sussex Assessment Office. The goalposts were moved by a Sussex student newspaper. And Peter Capaldi was upstaged by Katy Bourne. This was an Gabrielquotes production.


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