5th May 2021
95% of Irish teachers believe that the consultation on the Draft Irish Leaving Certificate Specifications should be postponed until a full review is completed of the Junior Cycle Irish course.
According to a survey of 420 Irish teachers conducted by “An Gréasán” (the subject association for teachers of Irish) 95% of teachers believe that the consultation on the new draft Irish specifications should be postponed until a review of the Junior Cycle Irish course is completed first. Teachers have expressed dissatisfaction regarding the Junior Cycle Irish course, and it is important that this course is fully analysed, that the problems with this course are resolved, and that an examination as to how the results of this review may in turn affect the proposed Leaving Certificate specifications is conducted.
89% of teachers also believe that the consultation should be postponed due to the pandemic. Physical meetings and focus groups are not permitted at present and teachers are also dealing with a hugely increased workload due to factors related to the pandemic. In this context it makes sense to postpone the process, to give everyone a proper chance to fully take part in the consultation.
80% of teachers believe that T1 students should be compensated (bonus points or equivalent) for completing a more challenging course. There is concern that the new course will be doomed for failure if students from Gaeltacht schools and Irish-medium schools are not appropriately compensated for taking a more challenging course. If compensation is not provided this could be to the detriment of Irish Medium Education in Gaeltacht areas and the Irish-medium education sector in general.
95% of teachers disagree with the recommendation that the percentage mark for the oral should be reduced, and 87% of teachers believe that a foundation level course should still be provided to students.
Teachers believe that not enough detail is provided in the specifications, and that there is a need to provide more details regarding the learning outcomes (97%), the literature (95%) and the assessment (98%) as part of this process.
Note to the editor:
This consultation is being carried out by NCCA. It is proposed that there will be two specifications, T1 (for Irish medium schools) and T2 (for English medium schools).
* ‘An Gréasán do Mhúinteoirí Gaeilge’ (The Network for Teachers of Irish) or ‘An Gréasán’ is a subject association. It operates as a representative organisation for post-primary teachers of Irish and provides professional development and support for teachers of Irish across the country.
Results of the survey attached.
Shane Ó Coinn (Chairperson) 0876547933
Sharon Ní Fhloinn (Public Relations Officer) 0879765509