Leaving Cert

  • For the second year Aurivo are offering the Gaffney & Mulleady Agri, Food and Nutrition Scholarship programme, which aims to recognise academic excellence and support young scholars hoping to develop their careers in agriculture and agri-related jobs. 

    Scholarships will be awarded to two students currently sitting the Leaving Cert and hoping to enter an agriculture, food or nutrition related bachelor’s degree programme in an accredited third level institution. The €2,500 scholarships are awarded in memory of Paddy Gaffney and Sean Mulleady. Closing date is June 29th 2018. 

    Pat Duffy from Aurivo joined us this morning to explain more. Listen back for more details and download the application form here http://bit.ly/2JZOIYz 

  • It's Results Day for over 1,700 students across Co Mayo, who will receive their Leaving Cert results today along with 59,000 students nationally.

    The results will be available in schools this morning, and will also be available online from 10am at www.examinations.ie

    Five students will open their results to discover they got 8 H1s in their final year exams.

    While 56 students achieved 7 top grades at higher level.

    The State Examinations Commissison says this year’s results are broadly in line with previous years.

    However, the number of candidates who failed ordinary level maths rose from almost 8 per cent last year, to just under 11 per cent this year.

    There was a marginal improvement in the number of students who passed higher level maths.

    For those going onto third-level education, the first round CAO offers will be available from 2pm on Thursday afternoon.

    The National Parents Council (Post-Primary) will operate a helpline facility from this morning to provide information and advice to students and their parents.

    The helpline number is 1800 - 265 165.

    On Leaving Cert results day, a plea is being issued for students’ safety.

     We are friends who look out for each other is the message being promoted on social media and sent to all the Secondary Schools students in county Mayo.

     The campaign is led by Mayo Road Safety officer Noel Gibbons together with a working group of Mayo County Council.

    The Cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council, Westport based Cllr Brendan Mulroy this morning congratulated all the students on their results and hopes they enjoy your night out tonight. But the local authority is reminding those celebrating to sort their lift home before going out and to wear a high viz jacket if you are walking on the road tonight, and stay with your friends.

    15 pedestrians have been fatally injured so far this year on Irish roads. The aim of the campaign is to get those who walk home after drinking to realise the danger they’re putting themselves in.

    The Cathaoirleach told Midwest News today that he is a big fan of the high viz jacket / vest

  • The ASTI has advised its members to engage with the calculated grades system for this year's Leaving Cert.

    The union's resolved a dispute with the Department of Education over legal protection for teachers.

    The calculated grades system for this year's Leaving Cert has been in doubt since last night, when the ASTI said it wouldn't engage with the model.

    They had concerns the state indemnity being offered didn't go far enough - and wanted a guarantee that if a student took a claim, 100 per cent of the legal costs would be covered.

    A meeting has been taking place between union and department officials this afternoon - and the ASTI now says it's secured the necessary clarifications.

    It's been assured that if a student unhappy with their grade sues, no teacher will have to employ their own legal team to defend themselves and run the risk of racking up large expenses.

    The ASTI says it's now in a position to advise members to engage with the calculated grades system for this year's Leaving Cert.

  • There are a number of issues surrounding the plans for this year's Leaving Cert students that need to be clarified by the Department of Education in the coming days.


    That's according to the Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland, who says they have a number of questions that still need a definitive response from the Department - such as the marking plans for students that take a subject outside of school.


    It was confirmed last Friday that grades calculated by teachers would replace the traditional exams, and teaching unions and school managers have called for safeguards to protect teachers from being canvassed by students or parents.


    Diarmiad de Paor, Deputy General Secretary of the ASTI, told Midwest News this evening that there's a lot of pressure on teachers, and a number of concerns regarding the plans for this year's Leaving Cert students....

  • A Mayo TD is calling for the deadline for Leaving Cert exam fees to be paid to be extended, given the current uncertainty as to when the exams will take place.

    Last week, the Education Minister announced that the Leaving Cert will most likely be rescheduled for late July or August, while the Junior Cert exams will not go ahead, and will be replaced by school-based exams and assessments.

    Mayo Fianna Fail TD Dara Calleary says the Junior Cert fee should now be scrapped, while the deadline for the Leaving Cert fee - which is the end of this month - should be extended until there's further clarity about the timing of the exams.

  • The Naughton Foundation Scholarship scheme is reminding leaving cert students that the closing date for applications for this year’s scholarships  is fast approaching.

    The closing date for receipt of application forms for The Naughton Foundation Scholarship is 5:30pm on Friday, 18th May 2018 and students from all 26 counties are eligible to apply. There will be one guaranteed scholarship for each of the 26 participating counties and five additional scholarships allocated.

    Students are invited to apply if they are currently attending secondary schools in County Mayo, and if they are studying two or more of the following subjects- physics, chemistry, biology, engineering, mathematics and applied mathematics. 

    Aaron Hannon, St. Muredach’s College, Ballina was one of the 2017 recipients from County Mayo and is now studying Engineering at Trinity College. Michael Mitchell, St. Gerard’s College, Castlebar was also awarded a scholarship in 2017 and is now studying Nanoscience, Physics and Chemistry of Advanced Materials at Trinity College.

    Each Naughton Scholarship is valued at €20,000 i.e. €5,000 for each year of the student’s third-level course for a student studying science, engineering, maths or technology in any publicly funded university or third-level institution in Ireland, including Northern Ireland. The school of each winner is also awarded €1,000.

    Full details on the Naughton Foundation Scholarship Programme and the 2018 application form are available for download and can be completed online on The Naughton Foundation website    www.thenaughtonfoundation.com

  • A drop in demand from international college students could see extra places available for Irish pupils at third level.

    The government is working towards holding the leaving certificate examinations from July 29th.

    Uncertainty surrounding the staging of the tests and how they will operate has been the source of stress for students.

  • Four schools in the West are among the 80 schools nationally that will be the first to study PE as a Leaving Cert subject.

    The Education Minister Richard Bruton has published a list of 80 schools that will partake in the first phase of the implementation of the new Physical Education for Senior Cycle programme.

    St Mary’s Secondary school in Ballina is the only Mayo school included on the list of 80 schools, along with Abbey Community College in Boyle, Co Roscommon and two schools in Co Galway – Gort Community School and the Dominican College at Taylor’s Hill in the city.

    The 80 were chosen from 369 schools that had applied to participate in the roll-out of PE at senior cycle.

    This announcement is part of the Government’s emphasis on encouraging healthy lifestyles, and is a key commitment in the Action Plan for Education.

    Students taking the new Leaving Cert subject from September 2018 will sit the first LCPE exam in 2020 – the subject can be taken at both higher and ordinary levels.

    And the new Senior Cycle PE Framework will provide a modern curriculum for teachers to teach PE to all students at senior cycle.

  • Grants have been allocated to schools offering Computer Science and Physical Education as Leaving Cert Subjects.

    104 post -primary schools will offer the courses for the first time from September.

    St Mary’s Secondary School in Ballina is offering Physical education for Leaving Cert this September, while Rice College in Westport is offering Leaving Cert Computer Science.

    Minister Michael Ring says the introduction of the new Leaving Certificate subjects is part of efforts to ensure the education system keeps pace with the changing society and needs of the economy.

    40 Schools will offer Computer Science as a subject in the first phase of its introduction from September

    While 64 will take part in the first phase of the introduction of Physical Education.

    The 104 schools have been allocated a total of four hundred and fifty thousand euro in grants.

  • The Leaving Cert written exams this summer have been cancelled.

    Students will have the option to sit them at a later date or accept a predicted grade.

    Teachers will provide a score for each subject and it'll have to be approved by the school principal.

    The Department of Education will then make sure there's an even national spread before students get their results.


  • The Education Minister has told students to aim for the Leaving Cert starting on Wednesday, July 29th.

    The exams have been pushed back from the usual start date of early June, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

    Minister Joe McHugh says he hopes to confirm the date in the next couple of weeks.

  • The State examinations begin today for some 124,000 pupils with a range of new measures aimed at reducing stress and anxiety levels.

    Youth mental health services such as Jigsaw have recorded a spike in the number of young people seeking support in the lead-up to the exams for issues such as anxiety and other difficulties.

    Minister for Education Joe McHugh says while the state exams are a big moment for young people, it's important to keep things in perspective.

    Students are being reminded to look after their mental health.

    Samaritans spokesperson, Theresa Bell, says the next few weeks can be an incredibly stressful time for students and their families.

    Over the next three weeks, more than 54-thousand will sit the Leaving Cert and almost 63-thousand will sit the Junior Cert.

    The exams get under way at 9.30am this morning, when Junior and Leaving Cert students will sit English exams.

    In the afternoon, Leaving Cert students will face home economics while Junior Cert students are due to sit civics, social and political education (CSPE).

    Minister McHugh also paid tribute to parents and teachers, who put in hard work every year to help young people prepare for exams and ensure they have much-needed support.

    The National Parents Council Post-primary also offered words of advice for parents wondering how to support their children over the coming days.

    Geoffrey Browne, the council’s president, said while parents may have been quietly supportive in the background, “now is the time to shower them with smiles, treats and a listening ear, rather than the advice that is often on the tip of your tongue”.

    ASTI president Breda Lynch advised pupils that after each exam they should “look ahead to the next one” and “avoid postmortems and the inevitable social media hype”.

    TUI president Seamus Lahart said while the State exams are important, students should remember that they “are not defined as a person by any set of exam results”.



  • Online registration for Leaving Cert calculated grades opens tomorrow at 10am.

    Participating students should log on to gov.ie/leavingcertificate where they will be be asked which level they are choosing.

    They will need: their exam number, their PPS number, email address and mobile phone number.

    Registration closes on Thursday 28th.




  • Oral and practical exams for this year's Leaving and Junior Cert have been cancelled, due to coronavirus.

    The Department of Education has confirmed that students will be awarded full marks in lieu of the oral exams in Irish and modern European languages.

    Oral exams were due to begin on 23rd March but have now been cancelled.

    The oral exam is worth 40% of overall Leaving Cert marks in Irish, and 25% in modern European languages.

    The Minister for Education Joe McHugh has also confirmed changes to the deadlines for students to complete project work and coursework in a number of subjects.

    Students were due to complete these elements of the State exams between tomorrow and the 24th April, depending on the subject.

    They will now be given until Friday 15th May to complete this work.

    No decision has yet been made in relation to the reopening of schools, or on June's Leaving Cert written exams.

  • Over 1700 students across Co Mayo will receive their Leaving Cert results today.

    The results are being made available in schools this morning, and students who cannot collect them in person can access the results online from 12 noon.

    Across the country, 57,149 students sat the Leaving Cert this year.

    The State Examinations Commission says the results this year are broadly in line with last year's, with improvements in the grades achieved in higher level Maths and in the Science subjects.

    This is the second year of the Leaving's simplified marking system, with just 8 grade levels.

    The National Parents Council (Post-Primary) is operating a helpline facility from this morning, to provide information and advice to students and parents.

    The helpline number is 1800 265 165, and the phones are staffed by members of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors.


    Further discussions will be held next week on the practicalities of holding the Leaving Certificate Examinations later this year.

    The 2020 Leaving Cert state exams are due to take place on July 29th.

    A stakeholders meeting took place today to discuss how the exams could take place, given the constraints of social distancing and other requirements.

    The Department of Education says the group will meet again on Wednesday.




  • The CAO Round One offers have just been released this morning.

    Leaving Cert students can check online to see what college places they've been offered.

    Demand for boom-time courses is rising with higher points in engineering, architecture and construction.

    Meanwhile, DCU academics have evaluated the impact of bonus points on higher-level maths.

    Dublin City University Professor Lisa Looney says the number of students taking higher-level maths has more than doubled.

  • St Mary’s Secondary School in Ballina is the only school in the county that will be offering PE as a leaving cert subject from September next, and many of the present TY class are delighted to have the opportunity to do the new subject for their leaving Certs in 2020.

    64 Schools nationwide have been selected to roll out the new curriculum for Leaving Cert.

    Activity areas include athletics, games, aquatics, adventure activities, gymnastics, dance and performance related fitness. Within the framework of these activities students will explore a wide range of topics such as the physical and psychological demands of performance, learning and improving skill technique and how media and technology impact sport.

    At the end of the programme students will sit an exam worth 50 percent while the remainder of the marks will be awarded for a sports performance (20%) and personal activity project (30%).

    Midwest News  spoke to students Tara Regan and Emma Honan about the opportunity to incorporate their interest in sport with their academic studies, but she began by talking to PE teacher in the school, Cierán Allen about the new exam subject.


    A start date for the Leaving Cert has been confirmed by the Minister for Education - it's Wednesday July 29th.

    Joe McHugh last night told the Dáil a schedule for the exams will be released in the first week of June.

    The confirmation of a start time for the exams been welcomed by teachers' unions.

    President of the TUI, Seamus Lahart, says the exam timetable will also impact the start date for the new college year.