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Students held sleepovers with classmates, parents organised car-sharing rides and teachers drove minibuses to ensure that those affected by the national rail strike would make it to their exams on time on Tuesday.

With more than 280,000 pupils in England and Wales taking GCSE history in the morning and close to 90,000 students taking A-level maths on Tuesday afternoon, some of those relying on the rail network to reach their exam centres faced a difficult journey and relied on friends or family for help.

But school leaders and headteachers who spoke to the Guardian said they were not aware of students missing their exams because of the strike, although some centres used their flexibility to delay the start of exams held in the morning.

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