A number of students have been booted off their courses after they were told they didn't actually have the correct grades needed for them.
The humiliated youngsters were forced to abandon their studies - despite already starting classes - after the Sixth Form college admitted it had made a 'cleric error.'
The mistake at Leek's Westwood College lead some students to think they had secured a place in the sixth form before being told that they had not got on their chosen courses.
Headteacher Richard Hey has admitted the mistake, telling the Stoke Sentinel : 'Unfortunately this year a small number of students received communication during the summer break indicating courses that did not properly take into account their GCSE examination results.
'This is always checked during the first days of term to ensure that students start appropriate courses and, if needed, we support them to find appropriate alternatives if they do not have the profile to be successful in those initial choices.'
Westwood College is part of the Leek Federation, which is also made up of Leek High and Churnet View Middle schools.
The mother of one of the teenagers, who wished to remain anonymous, said: 'My daughter completed her GCSEs at Westwood College before the summer and was offered a place at Westwood Sixth Form.
'She didn't actually get the grades they had set but she was still sent a letter in August about starting in September and also received a timetable, so we thought that she had got in despite her grades.
'On the first day of term she went in as planned and went to all the lessons without any problem
'But at the end of the day, a member of staff told her and a few other students that they should not be there as they had not got the places they wanted.
'I called the college and was told that there had been a clerical error.
'Westwood has not offered my daughter any alternative courses.
'We are currently talking to Leek College about getting her in there but, right now, she is still not in education after more than three weeks of the term, which is actually illegal but not our fault.'
The mother added: 'This has really knocked my daughter's confidence. It has just been humiliating for her and I am sure it has been the same for the other students affected.'