Head-teachers have been considering whether to mount a legal challenge over GCSE English after Ofqual said results would not be regraded.
The regulator admitted grade boundaries were higher in June than they were in January, but insisted it would be "inappropriate" to reconsider either of them.
The Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL) said it was not "acceptable or practicable" to make the students resit.
It warned it could still begin a legal challenge against grade boundary changes on the grounds that it had disadvantaged certain groups of students.
The teacher of a group of 11 year olds, who all took GSCE maths and passed, says she knew they were talented. The children at Ings Farm Primary School in Redcar all achieved grade C.
It hasn't just been teenagers nervously picking up their GCSE exam results. At Ings Farm Primary School in Redcar a group of 11 year olds collected their GCSE Maths results.
The seven pupils took the exam five years earlier than usual after their teachers spotted their love of Maths. They had no need to be nervous, they all got a grade C.
For the first time since GCSE exams began, the number of passes has fallen in the region. The Government says it will take action on schools where pupils don't get enough passes. A number of schools have said they are questioning their grades.
Hartlepool has reason to celebrate after young people there achieved some of the best GCSE results in the town’s history.
– Dean Jackson, Assistant Director, Performance and Achievement
“The town’s 16-year-olds have every reason to feel proud of their achievements, which reflect a lot of hard work by themselves and by the staff in their schools."
Almost 1,200 students have received their results. Early indications show the number of Hartlepool students achieving five or more A-C passes has improved. Over 81% achieved five or more A - C grades, over 3% more than last year.
Students in South Tyneside have achieved the borough's best-ever GCSE results. 90% of students got five GCSE passes at grades A* - C or their equivalent, up from last year's 89.3%. 57.2% of students got five A* - C passes including English and Maths.
– Cllr Joan Atkinson, Lead Member for Children, Young People and Families
I’d like to congratulate all our GCSE students on this superb set of results. They have reaped the rewards of their hard work and deserve to be thoroughly proud of themselves. Thanks should also go to their families as well as school staff and governors who all play a key role in supporting our young people and helping each and every one of them to fulfil their potential.
For the first time in years the number of passes in the North East has fallen.
The percentage of Cs and above awarded in the region fell by 0.4%.
Over the previous nine years the number of passes had risen by more than 16%.
Pupils at Excelsior Academy in Newcastle frantically open results. The school's pass rate in maths has gone up from 17% to 49% in three years. About 60% of pupils arrive at the school at an academic level lower than the national average.
North Tyneside council says that 88% of students achieved five or more GCSEs at grade A*to C, a record result.
The figure is up from 80% last year.