Word Pairs


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The United Kingdom has made a U-turn [over / under] the system it used to award exam grades for students hoping to [attentive / attend] university. The government had decided [at / on] using a controversial algorithm to determine the grades of students who were [incapable / unable] to take exams due to COVID-19. The algorithm gave students results that were a grade or two lower than the results [predicted / predictive] by teachers. About 40 per cent of the final results [be / were] downgraded. The results hit the headlines [was / as] the scores for students who live in [poorer / poverty] areas were downgraded. Many of these students did not get into university as a [score / result] , despite not taking an exam. Scores for richer students attending [private / privacy] schools were higher than predicted.

The algorithm turned [into / onto] a scandal for the government as it was accused of [flavoring / favoring] the rich. Parents and students were [fury / furious] with the government for what they saw as [gloss / gross] incompetence and for [ruining / ruing] the future, dreams and aspirations of England's young people. One commentator said the algorithm was designed by the elite for the elite. In its latest U-turn, the government announced that grades will now be awarded based [in / on] the predictions of teachers. Gavin Williamson, the UK Education Secretary, said: "I am [sorry / apologise] for the distress this [which / has] caused young people and their parents but [hopeful / hope] this announcement will now provide the certainty and reassurance they [reserve / deserve] ."

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