Third Year Priorities

Here is important information for Third Year parents, guardians and students.


  • Junior Certificate Examinations are scheduled to take place in June 2021. The advice from the Exams Commission is to continue as normal.
  • All schools are preparing their students for this outcome.

What happens if the exams are cancelled?

  • In the unlikely event that exams are cancelled the Junior Cert grades will be awarded by teacher based assessments.
  • This will be drawn from evidence including tests throughout the year. 
  • Evidence can also be gathered from CBAs, classroom engagement, attendance and homework.

Exam Entries

  • Junior Certificate Examinations will be Common level except for English, Maths & Irish which will continue to be Higher & Ordinary.
  • For this year only Woodwork, Metalwork and Technical Graphics will also be Higher & Ordinary.
  • Exam level entries will be based on performance in the Christmas Tests and the Pres in February.
  • Most teachers, where possible, will enter students for the Higher level at first, and then by consultation with students and parents, decide on a final level after the Pre-Certificate exam.
  • Sitting Higher level in Junior Cert means you can sit Higher in Leaving Cert. If you do Ordinary level at Junior Cert it is unlikely you can do Higher at Leaving Cert.


  • There have been changes to Classroom Based Assessments (CBAs).
  • In most subjects, one is required. This is different across the subjects. A CBA could be oral, practical or written.
  • Some CBAs have already been completed.
  • For those CBAs that have not been completed, the teachers are planning to do so before the deadlines. Deadlines are as follows:
    • 20th Nov 2020 – Visual Art. 
    • 4th Dec 2020 – Modern Foreign Languages.
    • 12th March 2021 – English, Science, Business Studies, Mathematics, History, Geography, Irish, Home Economics, Music.
  • CBAs must be completed in order for the Junior Certificate to be complete.


  • Attendance and punctuality is crucial to success.
  • Research tells us that every 10% of days missed, the students grade falls by one level.
  • Being in school and in lessons is most important but engagement in lessons must happen. This is ‘active learning’.
  • Attendance and focus in class and doing all the work set is crucial to avoid gaps in learning.


  • Homework and revision are also central to success. 
  • Homework cannot be corrected in the conventional way but can be viewed and commented on online.
  • Many teachers are using Google Classroom to set and review homework.
  • Revision requires a timetable. The school will provide a revision schedule for students.
  • Past papers will also be provided. The cost will be subsidized by the school.
  • There will be a 20 euro charge.
  • There are revision sites for the students to use. Studyclix and Revisewise. Some are free. We will be posting a list of recommended sites on our social media platforms.
  • We cannot offer Homework Club or Study Support this year due to Covid restrictions. However, we will ask for parental interest before Christmas and depending on the response see what we can provide.


  • It is great news about a vaccine, but it is unlikely to change the protocols in school this year so we will have to continue to work under difficult conditions.
  • Most students have been excellent in adhering to the Covid regulations – sanitizing, mask wearing and social distancing.
  • However, teachers report that recently masks have been slipping. Please ensure masks fit properly and cover the mouth and nose.
  • Also, to avoid contact at lockers students should have their books for 3 lessons ready.

The Future

  • This year has been very difficult for the current TY classes as they have missed out on the range of activities usually offered to Transition Year.
  • Hopefully, there will be some normality back next year.
  • But students need to look beyond TY and think about what happens at Leaving Cert and beyond. Will it be an apprenticeship, college or employment. Whatever the avenue you choose, study now makes a difference.
  • Have conversations with your son or daughter about the future.
  • Success in Junior Cert reflects in success at Leaving Cert. Good habits need to continue and bad habits need to be changed.
  • Remember, there are many bursaries and funding for further education, for those students who demonstrate hard work and endeavour.