The hybrid Leaving Cert system should be brought back for students sitting their exams next summer, Labour's Aodhán Ó Ríordáin says.
Current sixth-years will be the third set of students to sit a pandemic-era Leaving Cert.
In 2020 the written exams were cancelled and replaced with a calculated grades system based on teachers' assessment of a student's past work.
Around 3,000 students chose to sit delayed written exams in late 2020, but for the vast majority of students, the calculated grades determined their final results and college placements.
With further lockdowns disrupting classes in early 2021, a full hybrid system was introduced for the most recent summer exams.
Students had the choice of sitting traditional written exams, but the calculated grades system also returned - with final results based on the highest of the two grades (for students who opted in for both systems).
On Newstalk Breakfast, Deputy Ó Ríordáin - Labour's education spokesperson - says that same approach should return for 2022, as it would be the "fairest thing" for students.
He said: “I think if you put students at the heart of the process, as we rarely do, you’d realise not only did they lose a lot of in-class learning in fifth year… but the reality of their day-to-day learning over the last two month has been quite chaotic.
“The pandemic is still having a huge influence over their learning.”
He noted schools are experiencing substitute teachers problems, while many students have also had to spend time outside of classrooms due to illness or being a close contact of a COVID case.
He hopes schools will reopen as normal in January, but even rumours and speculation around school closures amid the ongoing Omicron wave cause further anxiety for students.
As a result, the Dublin TD suggested it should be “a lean, neat decision” for the Education Minister to recognise the disruption that has been caused.
This year's hybrid system did lead to some concerns around grade inflation and, as a result, rising CAO points.
However, Deputy Ó Ríordáin believes the system did work for many students.
He said: “While last year wasn’t perfect, it did give a level of certainty to students in the run-up to the exams.
“I have a concern we’re going to revert right back to the 2019 system, and all the potential for more fluidity or agility in the system would be lost.”