25 November, 2020 – Minister Foley reconvenes advisory group to assist in planning for 2021 state examinations

An advisory group of key stakeholders, which advised the Minister for Education on altered arrangements for the 2020 state examinations, was today reconvened in an online meeting to perform a similar role in respect of the 2021 examinations.

 

Speaking today at the first meeting of the reconvened group Minister for Education Norma Foley TD remarked on the very significant contribution that the group had made to contingency planning for the 2020 examinations and for their work regarding the Calculated Grades Process. In expressing her appreciation for this contribution she asked members of the group to again share their expertise, experience and advice in the planning for the 2021 examinations, work on which has already commenced by the State Examinations Commission (SEC).

 

The Minister reconfirmed that her firm intention is for the conventional Leaving Certificate Examinations to be held in 2021, with the appropriate public health and contingency measures in place. This view was echoed by members of the advisory group. The Minister said that the preparation for these examinations must first and foremost have the interests of students at heart. 

 

The advisory group of stakeholders includes representatives of students, parents, teachers, school leadership and management bodies, the State Examinations Commission, the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment and the Department, including the National Educational Psychological Service. Representatives from the Higher Education Authority and the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science are also represented on the advisory group to ensure liaison with the third level sector.

 

The Minister repeated her thanks to teachers, schools leaders and all others who facilitated the provision of Calculated Grades to over 60,000 young people which allowed them to progress to the next stage of their lives.  She also thanked all those involved in facilitating the holding of written Leaving Certificate and Junior Cycle examinations for some 2,500 students, which are currently running in schools and education centres across the country. 

 

As well as holding an exchange of views on arrangements for the 2021 examinations following a briefing from the SEC, the group was also provided with an update from the Department on Covid-19 and schools. 

 

The group will meet again in the coming weeks.