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Exam board Pearson Edexcel was forced to defend a question featured in its paper, which candidates sat last week, after one pupil left the room while the assessment was in process.
The question read: “There are 84 calories in 100g of banana. There are 87 calories in 100g of yogurt. Priti has 60g of banana and 150g of yogurt for breakfast.
“Work out the total number of calories in this breakfast.”
The exam board has since responded, saying it has reviewed the issue and still finds the question “valid”.
They have urged any individual students who thought the question affected their exam performance to get in touch.
Now, the outspoken ‘Good Morning Britain’ host has left us in no doubt as to his feelings on the subject.
“We should no longer be allowed to ask a question which includes the word calorie because it might trigger people’s mental health disorders? This country is going completely bonkers,” he said on this morning’s show.
“It’s nonsense,” he added.
His fellow host, Susanna Reid, responded: “I think her point is we should care about people with eating disorders who get upset about stuff.”
But Morgan had no time for this standpoint.
“No, we don’t rewrite the entire maths paper which has a perfectly reasonable question because someone might have a trigger moment,” he concluded.
Several people have echoed Morgan’s views on Twitter, with some calling the offended parties “snowflakes” – a derogatory term to describe people who are emotional, easily-offended and unable to deal with opposing opinions.
— Nathan (@Nathan5483) June 12, 2019
What am absolute joke! Get a grip women. It’s a maths question. It makes me laugh the crap people do for attention theses day! The eating disorder is what needs treating not change the entire papers over it.
— Carla radfordvincent (@carlagoo9) June 12, 2019
@piersmorgan unbelievable we can’t even have calories in a maths question Incase it insults someone !! This is why the country is in the state that’s it’s in !!
— garethwellbeloved (@gwellb) June 12, 2019
Others argued the question was inappropriate and should not have been featured.
Several people who weighed in had direct or indirect experience of eating disorders, and reinforced the idea of calories as a “trigger”.
As somebody who was hospitalised for anorexia in my final GSCE year this question would have been really difficult for me. Piers Morgan can fuck off, his ignorance is showing through again: https://t.co/no4U3E1tMR
— Rachel (@OpenMindMH) June 12, 2019
@GMB @piersmorgan @susannareid100 actually can’t believe what piers Morgan has just said about eating disorders, ‘any normal human’ wouldn’t be triggered. People with mental health difficulties are NORMAL too. Can’t believe what I just listened too as a young sufferer.
— Daniella (@DaniellaMallory) June 12, 2019
I'm a therapist in school working with children that have eating disorders. Piers your out of date, the pressure of 19 GCSE papers is very real. Children stressed and pressured could be tipped by that question.
— Jayne Gale 🌹 (@CFArtTherapy) June 12, 2019
Well, I'm no expert so I can't really say one way or the other. But if that question did trigger some people who have eating disorders then the question should be reviewed and possibly removed. After all eating disorders do kill, so it is a serious issue.
— Emma Gennard (@gennard_emma) June 12, 2019
Counting the calories is just the start that can lead down a slippery slope
— Matt Bartlett (LM) (@BartlettM96) June 12, 2019
Piers Morgan makes me sick tbh. I understand that YOU don’t understand how an eating disorder can effect how you think and act especially when faced with calorie counting questions etc. But don’t you dare put down those people and act like their feelings (1)
— tali is hugging ari (@lostinbxtera) June 12, 2019
I know a very good friend who died of anorexia. You're completely missing my point. My point isn't that it's a big issue, it's that this question is completely unconnected to their issue. And if anyone reads that maths question as anything but that, then they're pathetic. The end
— TradingGuru (@jamesstil1980) June 12, 2019
Morgan invites controversy on a regular basis through his TV appearances, most recently reigniting his obesity row with plus size model Tess Holliday after the magazine cover she appeared on last year received an award nomination.
If you or anyone you know is suffering from an eating disorder, you can seek help on the BEAT website.