Court case on Z score [ SCFR 29/2012 ]

Country Sri Lanka
Category Right to Education
Date of Judgment 26-06-2012
Link / Attachment http://www.supremecourt.lk/index.php?option=com_geda&Itemid=113&limitstart=20
  • Description

    This is an application filed by 16 students, who sat for the General Certificate of Education (Advanced Level) Examination (hereinafter referred to as the Advanced Level Examination) held in August 2011 and a Trade Union registered under the provisions of the Trade Union Ordinance, No.14 of 1935, as amended. The petitioners complained that the application of an erroneous and unjustifiable common formula to calculate the Z-Scores of the candidates of both New and Old Syllabi of the Advanced Level Examination in 2011, which resulted in the failure to rank the most suitable candidates for admission to Universities is arbitrary, unreasonable, irrational, unjustifiable and is in violation of the petitioners’ fundamental rights guaranteed under Article 12 (1) of the Constitution

    The Supreme Court whilst referring to the concept of equal protection of the law stipulated in Article 12 (1) of the Constitution and the inherent ability to consider reasonable classification within the concept of right to equality, had held that the Court is not concerned with the motivation for the impugned action, but only with its effects. It was therefore held that selection by application of the ratio basis resulted in discrimination between equals and accordingly should be struck down

    Source:
    1. http://www.sundaytimes.lk/120701/news/court-says-rights-of-students-violated-4889.html

    2. http://www.tisrilanka.org/pub/pp/pdf/Z-Score_Long_final.pdf

    3. http://www.supremecourt.lk/index.php?option=com_geda&Itemid=113&limitstart=20

  • Judgment

    The Supreme Court directed the University Grants Commission [UGC] to take necessary and relevant steps to calculate the Z - Scores of the candidates according to the accepted statistical norms and principles on the basis that the candidates of the New Syllabus and the Old Syllabus are two distinct populations.

    (Excerpt from the Judgement)

    On an examination of all the aforementioned, it is abundantly clear that the New Syllabus and the Old Syllabus which were used for the Advanced Level Examination, 2011 cannot be considered as a single population as they belong to two different categories. It is also to be noted that in the year 2000, when the students sat separately under the New and Old Syllabi for the Advanced Level Examination, they were treated as two distinct populations for the purpose of calculating the Z-Scores of the respective candidates. Therefore the two groups of students who sat for the Advanced Level Examination in 2011, should be treated as they belong to two different populations. 

    Source:
    1. http://www.sundaytimes.lk/120701/news/court-says-rights-of-students-violated-4889.html

    2. http://www.tisrilanka.org/pub/pp/pdf/Z-Score_Long_final.pdf

    3. http://www.supremecourt.lk/index.php?option=com_geda&Itemid=113&limitstart=20