Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Questions (174, 178, 222, 230, 232, 238, 259, 279, 280, 301, 310, 323)

Patrick O'Donovan

Question:

174. Deputy Patrick O'Donovan asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will address a matter regarding calculated grades (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8498/20]

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Mairéad Farrell

Question:

178. Deputy Mairéad Farrell asked the Minister for Education and Skills the process that will be followed regarding the calculated grades system in the case of students whose families have provided home schooling sometimes in the form of a private tutor in the best interests of the educational development of their child; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8538/20]

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Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

222. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will address the case of a person (details supplied) regarding the leaving certificate; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8879/20]

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Pauline Tully

Question:

230. Deputy Pauline Tully asked the Minister for Education and Skills the alternative to calculated grades for leaving certificate being made available to students who are home-schooled or take a subject outside of school without a recognised tutor; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8924/20]

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Catherine Martin

Question:

232. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Education and Skills the consideration given to students who have studied a subject outside of school and who, therefore, do not have a teacher to give them a calculated grade; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8933/20]

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Éamon Ó Cuív

Question:

238. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Education and Skills the arrangements being made in the new measures regarding the leaving certificate in 2020 for students who are studying a subject for the leaving certificate outside the school system and for those, some of whom are repeating their leaving certificate, who are not attending a school establishment during this academic year; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8943/20]

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Joe Flaherty

Question:

259. Deputy Joe Flaherty asked the Minister for Education and Skills the provisions or options for students who were planning to sit one subject in the leaving certificate in 2020, primarily students who were planning to repeat Irish with a view to securing a necessary higher grade (details supplied). [9129/20]

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Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire

Question:

279. Deputy Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire asked the Minister for Education and Skills the number of students who would have sat the leaving certificate this summer who will now not be entitled to a calculated grades due to a lack of evidence or lack of access to a registered teacher for a given subject or several subjects [9297/20]

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Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire

Question:

280. Deputy Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will consider arranging an alternative examination for potential leaving certificate students that will now not receive a calculated grade such as, for example, an online oral [9298/20]

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Gerald Nash

Question:

301. Deputy Ged Nash asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of students taking languages in their mother tongue who do not have a designated teacher either inside or outside of school; his plans to ensure such students receive a fair predicted grade; if they will be obliged to sit a written exam; if obliged to sit a written exam, if affected students will be able to sit their exams and receive results before the beginning of the commencement of the 2020/2021 term year; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9478/20]

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Gary Gannon

Question:

310. Deputy Gary Gannon asked the Minister for Education and Skills the system put in place for external candidates and students who are home tutored in their sixth year in view of the fact that predictive grades rely on the expertise of teachers and knowledge of a student. [9510/20]

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Steven Matthews

Question:

323. Deputy Steven Matthews asked the Minister for Education and Skills the way in which the recent announcement regarding the cancellation of the leaving certificate will impact students studying single subjects outside of traditional school settings be that as an extra subject to supplement their in school options or as a single exam that was undertaken to achieve qualification for a specific course requirement such as honours level Irish for primary school teaching. [9757/20]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 174, 178, 222, 230, 232, 238, 259, 279, 280, 301, 310 and 323 together.

Where a student is studying one or more subjects outside of a recognised school, every effort will be made by the school to provide an estimated mark where the principal is confident that there is sufficient evidence of the student’s achievement to make an objective judgement. My Department will be flexible in accepting estimated marks and rankings from other schools or colleges, and will look at this issue on a case-by-case basis. All reasonable efforts should be made to obtain a satisfactory evidence base. This includes situations where students are studying subjects outside of school, including the non-curricular languages.

In the case of students taking a subject outside school, the detailed guidance for schools published on 21 May provides details of how schools should proceed if school management authorities are confident that there is sufficient evidence of the student’s achievement to make an objective judgement.

For students in receipt of home tuition with an association to the school, the guidance published on 21 May provides information for school authorities to engage with the home tutor in arriving at a decision.

If the student is not being taught by a registered teacher, the principal will need to consider whether there is sufficient evidence on which to base an estimate. If there is not sufficient evidence, then it is highly unlikely that the Department will be able to generate a calculated grade for that subject.

In general, provided an estimated mark and ranking can be generated from a teacher in a way that is fair to all candidates, my Department will seek to provide a calculated grade. Students will be able to use this calculated grade in the same way as a Leaving Certificate grade to satisfy minimum entry requirements.

Where it is not possible to provide a calculated grade students will have the opportunity to sit the 2020 Leaving Certificate examination at a later date when it is safe to do so.