State Examinations Update

28 April, 2020

Dear Parent(s)/Guardian(s),

Herewith copy of JMB Bulletin received today:

State Examinations Update

Last Friday, 24th April, the Department of Education & Skills hosted their third formal meeting with a range of stakeholders as part of planning for the State Examinations in response to the Covid-19 public health measures.

The advisory group of stakeholders includes representatives of students, parents, teachers, school leadership and management bodies, the State Examinations Commission, the National Educational Psychological Service, the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment and the Department.

Leaving Certificate:
At this meeting, the State Examinations Commission provided an update on the work in progress on the holding of the Leaving Certificate examinations which the Minister has announced are now scheduled to commence on 29th July 2020.

Junior Certificate:
The meeting also considered issues concerning Junior Cycle Assessment, in the context of the decision that the state Junior Cycle examinations will not run this year. These discussions will continue when the group meets next week.

On reporting on the meeting, Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD said: “I welcome the progress made in several areas today, including issues concerning the Junior Cycle final examinations. As I stated earlier this week, I would urge schools not to make any local decisions concerning assessment at junior cycle level until the Advisory Group has concluded its discussions on that part of its work.”

The Joint Managerial Body is aware that media speculation over the weekend, especially in relation to junior cycle assessment, will understandably prompt queries directed at school management from members of their communities. The intention is that the compendium of pertinent issues is dealt with in an expedient and coherent manner this week by all of the partners in education, and that decisions are arrived at that can be applied across all of the schools in the system.


We appreciate that this is an uncertain time for everybody in our schools and we can only applaud the efforts of all to date to deal with the difficult circumstances in which we find ourselves. But there are no simple solutions to some of the issues that we face, and at a time of national emergency we do take direction from our government and our Ministers as they deal with the evolving situation and take the necessary decisions in accordance with their medical advice.
The Joint Managerial Body will issue further advice to schools this week as more detail emerges.

We will have to wait until the Advisory Group reports on the Junior Cycle assessments.  The school is currently working on a plan to hold assessments at the end of May in the event that schools are instructed by the Department to proceed with assessments at that time.

Kind regards,

Maurice Keohane



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