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TUI seeks full return to state exams this year

Posted by Schooldays Newshound, on 10/01/2022. TUI seeks full return to state exams this yearTags: Teachers Parenting

It is the strong position of the Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI) that the traditional State Examinations must take place this year. The current circumstances are radically different from previous years and there is no justification for offering additional options to students. On that basis, the TUI will not support any other options. 

Recent contributions from some political parties around this issue are unhelpful and will inevitably lead to more uncertainty in school communities that are already struggling with the varied consequences of the pandemic. We are already receiving reports of students disengaging because of an expectation that they will not have to sit examinations. This is very damaging to the education system and to the prospects of those students.

Schools have remained open throughout this academic year and despite obvious challenges at present due to infections and isolation requirements, the consistent messaging from those with expertise in the area is that current high numbers of COVID-19 cases will fall in the near future. The scheduling of Orals and Music Practicals in the traditional Easter break has created additional tuition time that would not previously have been available, balancing somewhat the losses in time that students have experienced. 

In 2020 and 2021, teachers demonstrated flexibility and commitment by engaging with emergency assessment processes on a ‘without precedent’ basis so that final year students could progress to the next stage of their lives. Our co-operation with these processes was only on the basis of absolute necessity and this remains the case. 

The standardisation process was vitally important in the last two years, but cannot be replicated this year because more than half of students in some schools have no Junior Cycle data. In other schools, where there is no Transition Year programme, no student will have Junior Cycle data for the standardisation process.  

We will continue to engage with the other stakeholders. We believe that further consideration could be given to extending the breadth of topics covered in papers or adjusting marking schemes, and any other reasonable measures that might take account of this year’s circumstances as we see how the situation evolves. 

But the TUI’s clear position is that the Junior and Leaving Certificate examinations across all Leaving Certificate programmes must return this year, with all additional and second components of assessment such as Orals, Practicals and project work etc. in place for the benefit of all students. 

Source: TUI Statement



(10/01/2022 15:59)

ASTI committed to externally-assessed Leaving Cert 2022 in line with expectations

The ASTI is committed to an externally-assessed Leaving Certificate 2022 in line with the students’ and teachers’ expectations.

Across all subjects, ASTI members are implementing the agreed curricular revisions designed to allow the established Leaving Certificate to proceed as outlined by the Minister for Education and her Department. The ASTI also notes new one-off arrangements for oral exams in Irish and modern foreign languages and the music practical exam for Leaving Certificate 2022.

School communities – including teachers and their students – are currently working to these curricular and other arrangements.

The preservation of Ireland’s high quality, fair, and independent State Exams system is vital.

Unfortunately, due to the pandemic in 2020, and the absence of a vaccination programme at that time, students could not undertake their Junior Certificate exams as normal. A significant number of these students are now in their Leaving Cert year. This means that there is no Junior Cert data from externally assessed Junior Cert exams available for these students.

Leaving Cert students are currently preparing for a variety of non-written examinations such as practicals and orals to take place in Spring, alongside their preparation for the written examinations in June. Speculation regarding previous one-off grading processes during the pandemic is unhelpful at this stage, particularly given that the data used for these processes is not available for all 2022 Leaving Cert students.


(10/01/2022 16:00)

In a significant development, the National Association of Principals and Deputy Principals (NAPD) is seeking a hybrid approach, giving students a choice of exams and accredited grades, or both.



(10/01/2022 17:59)

Can't have traditional leaving cert. What about the students that can't be in school they have no online teaching. Then we have teachers out and no classes . Most student won't have covered all of the curriculum. Make the call now Norma take the stress of the students .

Siobhan Burke

(10/01/2022 19:33)

What about the pupils mental health. Two years + of anxiety, loss of school time, no social life. Many of them are not even looking towards college because after last years stupid points race they reckon there's no point as they'll never be able to get the required points.


(11/01/2022 17:29)

This years classes are into the 3rd year of this they have had it the worst. There is terrible mental health problems in this age range, this would be so much better


(11/01/2022 09:07)

ISSU STATEMENT : Students Union says State Exams Cannot Go Ahead as Planned

The Irish Second-Level Students' Union (ISSU) has said that the State Examinations 2022 cannot go ahead as planned.

Under current plans, students sitting the 2022 State Exams would see adjustments and more choice on their exam papers. The union representing second-level students have called this a “complete disregard for students' best interests”.

Speaking on the matter, ISSU Uachtarán, Emer Neville said: “The State Exams cannot go ahead as planned, that much is clear. This year's cohort of exam students have been very vocal about the disruption they are facing in and out of the classroom. There is no online tuition provided to those isolating, and students have missed class time throughout 2021 and 2020, as a result of school closures. There is no way we can stand over assessing these students with the traditional Leaving Certificate. We are calling on the Minister of Education to take students' voices into account and revise the decision about State Exams for 2022.”

Further to this, Jack McGinn, ISSU Education Officer, added ‘We have heard concerns about some students in this year's Leaving Certificate cohort not having a Junior Cycle certificate to use for standardisation. However, in light of the circumstances, we must put students first as it is their future that will be impacted.’

The ISSU is currently surveying second-level students on the matter, provisional results showing a clear favour towards a hybrid model. The survey will close on Friday, January 14th with an estimation of up to 30,000 responses. The highly anticipated survey results are hoped to launch on Monday, January 17th.

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