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State Examinations

Dáil Éireann Debate, Wednesday - 25 May 2022

Wednesday, 25 May 2022

Questions (89, 90, 91)

Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire

Question:

89. Deputy Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire asked the Minister for Education the estimated full-year cost of running a leaving certificate helpline for the entire duration of the school year in conjunction with the National Parents’ Council. [26565/22]

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Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire

Question:

90. Deputy Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire asked the Minister for Education the estimated full-year cost of running a leaving certificate helpline for the entire duration of the school year without any financial or staffing contribution from the National Parents’ Council. [26566/22]

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Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire

Question:

91. Deputy Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire asked the Minister for Education if he will provide information on the way that the leaving certificate helpline worked in 2021; the length of time it was available for; how was the workload of setting up and running the helpline split between his Department and the National Parents’ Council; the amount it cost in total; and the amount her Department contributed to this. [26567/22]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 89, 90 and 91 together.

I propose to take PQs 26565/22, 26566/22 and 26567/22 together.

The NPCPP Leaving Cert Helpline is a national free phone service provided for all post primary final year students and their parents/guardians. This service offers professional and confidential one to one support, advice, and guidance on LC, LCA, LCVP, VTOS, QQI results, and CAO offers. The Helpline opens on the day the Leaving Cert results are issued and runs during the CAO first round offers.

The Helpline phones are staffed by a professional team of guidance counsellors and supports parents/guardians and students around the points system, accredited grades, rechecks, repeats, CAO procedures, apprenticeships, traineeships, and further training options and many other queries. Information on SUSI grants is also available.

The estimated cost of running the Helpline for one week is €40,000 to which my Department gives €20,000. Because the Helpline is operated by Guidance Counsellors who are in schools during term time, there would be a need to train additional staff, which would incur a cost.

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