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'Somewhat happy': Students react to new Leaving Cert grading system

Several Leaving Certificate students have reacted to the new grading system which will see the re...
Marita Moloney
Marita Moloney

10.12 2 Sep 2020


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'Somewhat happy': Students rea...

'Somewhat happy': Students react to new Leaving Cert grading system

Marita Moloney
Marita Moloney

10.12 2 Sep 2020


Share this article


Several Leaving Certificate students have reacted to the new grading system which will see the removal of 'school profiling'.

The Education Minister Norma Foley confirmed yesterday that some 17% of the grades handed out next week will be downgraded.

Speaking on Newstalk Breakfast today, four Leaving Cert students reacted to the news.

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Molly Gordon Bowles from Co Wicklow said: "I was very pleased to hear the announcement yesterday, it does feel like the Government is on top of the situation.

"Hopefully, they've seen the mistakes that happened in the UK and can learn from them and improve them so that it doesn't happen here.

"I was very pleased to hear that the school profiling had been scrapped because I don't think the students should have their exam results for the next steps of their future decided by their socioeconomic situation and where they're from.

"At the end of the day, we don't have a say on the family we're born into, we don't get to choose our financial situation and where we'll be situated.

She added: "It has led me to question why do we punish those from disadvantaged areas because the fact that this factor was going to be considered for the profiling, it shows that it benefits students from more advantaged and well off areas and it's wrong.

"So it is used every year but there shouldn't be a relationship between someone's academic ability and their social class."

'Everyone is somewhat happy'

Anna Leahy, a former student at CBS secondary school in New Ross, Co Wexford, said the 17% figure was "disappointing" but "the best that could have been achieved".

Anna, who is hoping to study engineering in WIT, said: "Compared to Britain it's a lot better and I think in the circumstances we have to get on with it.

"I'm delighted they're after getting rid of school profiling, I think that would have been a disaster for the class of 2020 but I think what they're after doing now is the best result that could have been achieved.

"They're after getting to a point that everyone is somewhat happy.

She said she would be disappointed if she found that one of her papers had been downgraded but that given the circumstances caused by COVID-19 you just have to "get on with it".

Dylan McLaughlin from Thurles, Co Tipperary, said he was also happy that the profiling system had been removed.

He said: "The way I'm looking at it is that 83% of the grades that teachers handed in will the same or better.

"I know 17% of grades will be downgraded but that's a lower figure than we had in the UK

"I'm quite happy with the announcement yesterday and I'm delighted that the school profiling is gone because that wasn't right at all.

Dylan questioned whether the increase in college places would counteract the rise in points but that all students can do is wait and see until the CAO offers are released.

Lorcan Craven-Grace from Celbridge in Co Kildare added: "I'm a little bit scared about the coming days, this grade inflation is going to disadvantage a lot of people and advantage others.

"I think its a little bit unfair the way this year has been used as a trial run for a new system without us knowing throughout the course of our time in school."

Main image: File Photo by RollingNews.ie

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