February 15, 2021
Students must get clarity on Leaving Cert tomorrow – Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Education, Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD, has urged the Taoiseach and the Minister for Education to end their delay and ensure students get clarity about the Leaving Cert tomorrow.

Teachta Ó Laoghaire said: 

“The Government has failed Leaving Cert students for far too long, with constant dithering and delay instead of the certainty and clarity that students need. 

“I hope that Leaving Cert students will get long overdue clarity tomorrow and that they can finally begin planning for their futures. The Government cannot expect them to live in limbo for much longer.

“From speaking with students, I know they are incredibly frustrated, stressed and worried. Students have made it clear that they want a choice between an alternative form of assessment, such as calculated grades, and a written exam.

“Some students will want to sit written exams, and those who wish to do so should be facilitated in doing so. However, a choice is only fair in the context of the significant learning loss experienced by Leaving Cert students.

“I believe this choice must be on a no-detriment basis – that is, that if a student is unhappy with their alternative grade in a subject, they can choose to take an exam in this subject and take the higher mark for their CAO.

“If a decision is finally made tomorrow and the plans announced incorporate this choice, then I believe there is time to ensure students will be able to go on to receive CAO offers in August as usual regardless of the option students opt for. However, the Minister needs to act quickly on this. 

“I welcome that ASTI have reengaged in talks and that discussions are ongoing with all stakeholders. Dialogue will be vital in addressing concerns and achieving an outcome which works for all affected.

“Leaving Cert students have been left in the lurch for too long. It’s time for the Government to show leadership and give students the clarity and certainty they deserve.”

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