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The Education Reform(Northern Ireland) Order 1989

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Duty to conduct examinations and assessments

21.—(1) The Northern Ireland Schools Examinations and Assessment Council shall, subject to the following provisions of this Article,—

(a)conduct, and award the appropriate certificates for, the relevant examinations, in accordance with such rules as the Council may determine;

(b)conduct the relevant assessments, in accordance with such assessment arrangements as are specified under Article 7(1)(b);

(c)conduct the moderation of relevant examinations and relevant assessments;

(d)seek to ensure that the standards of the relevant examinations and of the relevant assessments are recognised as equivalent to the standards of examinations and assessments conducted by other bodies or authorities exercising similar functions elsewhere in the United Kingdom.

(2) Arrangements made by the Council for the conduct of the relevant examinations may include provision—

(a)for the conduct of external examinations on syllabuses specified by the Council and approved by the Department under Article 9;

(b)for the conduct of external examinations on syllabuses prepared by individual schools or groups of schools or by individual institutions of further education or groups of such institutions or groups of schools and such institutions and approved by the Department under Article 9;

(c)for external assessment of examinations conducted internally by individual schools or groups of schools or by individual institutions of further education or groups of such institutions or groups of schools and such institutions and approved by the Department under Article 9.

(3) The Council may enter into arrangements to perform functions or provide services to or on behalf of any other examining body or authority and such arrangements may provide for the payment by the said body or authority of the whole or part of any expenditure incurred by the Council in carrying out the arrangements.

(4) The Council may—

(a)arrange for the relevant examinations, or part thereof, to be conducted on its behalf by any other examining body or authority;

(b)with the approval of the Department, arrange for the relevant assessments, or part thereof, to be conducted on its behalf by any other body, authority or person;

(c)make payments to any such body, authority or person in respect of the expenditure incurred in carrying out the arrangements.

(5) The Council may appoint such examiners, assessors, moderators and other persons as it considers necessary for the performance of its functions and shall pay them such salaries, fees or other allowances as the Council may determine.

(6) The Council may publish rules and syllabuses for the relevant examinations and may publish specimen examination papers and such other material as it considers desirable.

(7) The Council may charge such fees in connection with relevant examinations as may be approved by the Department.

(8) Every certificate awarded by the Council shall be signed on behalf of the Council.

(9) The Council shall make arrangements for the consideration by the Council of appeals against any decision or complaints against any action of the Council.

(10) The Council may enter into arrangements with a board for the board to assist the Council in the exercise of any of its functions under this Article and such arrangements may provide for the payment by the Council to the board of the whole or part of any expenditure incurred by the board in carrying out the arrangements.

(11) A board shall have power to enter into and carry out any arrangements under paragraph (10).

(12) In this Article—

“relevant assessments” means assessments of pupils required by Article 6(3);

“relevant examinations” means—

(a)

examinations for the Northern Ireland General Certificate of Secondary Education;

(b)

examinations for the Northern Ireland General Certificate of Education at Advanced (including Advanced Supplementary) Level;

(c)

such other examinations as the Department, after consultation with the Council, may determine.

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