A girl burst into tears when a disc jockey told her before an estimated
80,000 radio listeners that there had been a "dreadful" mistake in her HSC
result - she had not scored a perfect TER of 100 because one of her papers had
been wrongly marked.
Later the teenager was told by another station announcer that a nasty trick
had been played on her.
The NSW Board of Studies has complained about the incident to Today FM,
Sydney's highest rating FM station.
The disc jockey, David Rymer (pictured), who hosts the 7-10pm shift, had told
the girl that he was from the board and that she had scored 49, not 89, for
When the distressed student asked, "Look, is this a joke?", Rymer replied:
"No, not at all; no, no, no, we just want to clear things up, we just want to
make sure what happened with our computer today - we had a few of these things
floating around. It's a little bit disturbing."
He then queried her maths and biology marks.
By now distraught, the teenage girl replied, "It's a hell of a lot
The girl went to get her results and it was not until she returned that
another Today FM disc jockey told her that she had been the victim of a
A board spokesperson said yesterday that the incident ruined what should have
been one of the happiest days of the girl's life and "the board will be
discussing the issue further with the station".
Rymer denied last night that he had claimed that he was from the board when
he telephoned her on air, and said that the call "was working in the sense that
the girl was believing it".
However, the Herald has obtained a tape-recording of the show and Rymer is
clearly heard saying that he is "Paul Black from the NSW Board of Studies".
It is understood the girl was crying and shaking during and after the phone
call and felt publicly humiliated by the incident.
Rymer told the Herald that he did not regret making the call but he was sorry
the girl took it so seriously.
"It was meant in the spirit of good fun," Mr Rymer said.
"There was no harm done. We detected that she had really taken the bait and
we phoned her up after the call to make sure that she was OK."