Home News BREAKING: New Leaving Cert regime confirmed by Minister for Education

BREAKING: New Leaving Cert regime confirmed by Minister for Education

Minister for Education Joe McHugh has confirmed the new Leaving Cert regime that will take place.

He says that the government has taken the decision to move to ‘Plan C’.

In short, that means that students can choose to take predictive grades, or wait until it is safe and to sit the exams in person.

Minister McHugh said: “I have come to this conclusion with a heavy heart. The Leaving Cert is important, but it’s life that matters.

“The Class of 2020 will never forget the events of this year … I am disappointed that we are unable to run things the same way as in previous years … We are removing uncertainty and providing a clear solution.

“We all know the Leaving Certificate can be a stressful time. Some students have parents working on the frontline, others are anxious about families and some are grieving.

“I have made every effort to run the 2020 Leaving Certificate as close as possible to the way the examinations were originally intended to be held

“My desire had been to allow students to undertake the written and practical examinations July and August but I have compelling evidence, based on medical advice and other assessments, that the Leaving Certificate examinations cannot be held in a reliable and valid manner, nor in way that would be equitable for students.”

The Leaving Cert exams, if students wish to take them, have been ‘postponed to a later date when it is safe’.

The ‘predicted grades’ cannot be administered by the State Exams Commission – and a new body will have to be established.

The ‘predicted grades’ are to be issued by teachers and are to be based on all school based exams to date.

This grade will then be moderated by teachers in same department in school, ran past the school Principal and then put through a mathematical algorithm for further standardisation.

The department will then finalise the grades for each student which will be issued to each student as close as possible to the traditional date.

Mr McHugh said they will use “professional judgement of each student’s attainment” which will be “subjected to a rigorous in school alignment process to ensure fairness”.

Mr McHugh concluded that he has a “responsibility to find a fair way to address the disadvantage that some students are facing and the impact a lack of time in school has had in recent weeks.

“The decision has to be taken now to remove the anxiety that many students have been experiencing over how the expansion would look later in the summer.”

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Stradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016.