Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

09.33 17 Feb 2021


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The Housing Minister says the Government is now 'pretty close' to reaching a resolution for this year's Leaving Cert.

Darragh O'Brien said it's better to get an agreement with teachers and unions.

Education Minister Norma Foley will today update the Cabinet Sub-Committee on Education on the negotiations with unions.

It’s understood the favoured model is one that has an element of written exams along with some predictive grades.

It's not yet clear whether an agreement can be reached before today's sub-committee meeting.

The Teachers' Union of Ireland is hopeful a deal can be reached today, although the union feels the Junior Cert will have to be cancelled for the Leaving Cert to go ahead.

On today's Newstalk Breakfast, Minister O'Brien said the Education Minister has been working hard to find a way forward.

Government now 'pretty close' to reaching Leaving Cert resolution - O'Brien

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He said: “I’m acutely aware and Government is that we need a resolution here, particularly around the Leaving Cert.

“Our students deserve certainty... that’s really what we’re working towards.

“I think we’re pretty close to getting there - progress is being made."

He added he 'really does hope' there’ll be a resolution this week.

Meanwhile, Arthur Godsil - former headmaster of St Andrew's College in Dublin - said the ongoing confusion is unnecessary.

He observed: "What I find really difficult to understand is that, in the long time since the first lockdown, we haven't actually managed to be clear with the students, teachers and all those in education.

"Some decision has to be made soon, so students can work out exactly what is going to happen."

Mr Godsil said students want clarity, but they also want choice when it comes to the Leaving Cert itself - including extra choice within individual exam papers.

Main image: File photo of Darragh O'Brien. Picture by: Niall Carson/PA Archive/PA Images

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