JC 2021

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Update for 3rd Year Students and Parents/Guardians

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The Minister for Education brought some clarity to our 3rd year Junior Cycle students and their parents/guardians when announcing that Junior Cycle exams will not proceed this year.

I have no doubt that some will feel our plan is too ambitious for our 3rd years and some will feel it does not go far enough. These guidelines, found here, are explicit in their direction and have informed our decision making in order to meet the needs of teachers students and parents in a fair and balanced way.

In 2021, the Junior Cycle learning achievement of students will be recognised through a specific form of certification designed to meet the current, exceptional circumstances presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. For each student, certification will involve two elements:

  1. A State Certificate of completion of Junior Cycle from the Department of Education and Skills. Students should receive a State Certification that they have completed three years of Junior Cycle education in a number of subjects. This certification will be provided by the Department of Education and Skills.
  2. A School Report setting out the learning achievements of students in Junior Cycle. Students will receive a written report on the broad range of learning that they have achieved in each subject at the end of Junior Cycle. This assessment of their learning will be provided by their teachers.

Schools have been given autonomy in how this assessment is to be arrived at and the format in which the report is to be provided. We will be reporting on completed Class Based Assessments (CBAs), a Grade in each subject and a qualitative comment from each of a student’s teacher. The structure for reporting, in the School Report, on each of these three areas is as follows;

Class Based Assessments.

Students must complete one CBA in total across all of 2nd & 3rd year. Where this CBA is still to be completed this will be done in the period after April 12th. We will include the ‘descriptor’ on student performance in that CBA on the School Report. The descriptor for the CBA can vary from;

Qualitative Comment from teachers in each subject.

A comment from the teacher regarding student engagement, attitude to work and academic development in each subject. This may also include reference to ongoing project work or CBAs that are started but unavoidably incomplete or not moderated in a SLAR meeting due to school closures.



The following criteria will be used to calculate the Grade that will appear on the School Report with reporting completed by May 28th 2021.

Effectively, 50% of the marks will be weighted towards work completed before March 15th 2021 with 50% allocated through a form of assessment to be completed between March 15th and May 21st. Each subject department will set a limited quantity of agreed assessable components and students will be informed of the type of, timing and quantity of assessments happening in each subject by their class teacher.

Subjects will be graded in the following bands (percentage range), depending on whether or not a student’s subject is being assessed under the ‘old’ Junior Certificate Model or under the new Junior Cycle model, with the relevant grade appearing on the School Report.


The key message for current 3rd years is that work/assessments prescribed between now and May 21st will count towards 50% of their grade. Individual subject teachers will advise their students in this regard.


If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us in the college.  You can find our email addresses here.


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