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Minister must come clean on Leaving Cert oral exam controversy – Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD

14 June, 2021 - by Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Education, Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD, has called on Minister Foley to immediately make a statement regarding the scale of the issues with the Leaving Cert oral exams, and the actions she will take to redress this for students.

This comes following reports that significant numbers of Leaving Cert students were marked down in their oral exams due to shortcomings in the way these exams were conducted.

Teachta Ó Laoghaire said:

“I am extremely concerned to hear reports that a significant number of Leaving Cert language students, through no fault of their own, have been marked down due to shortcomings in the way that the oral exams were run this year.

“Students need clarity on whether they have been affected by this, and what this will mean for their results. The Minister must make a statement and provide detail on how widespread this issue is, and what she will do to redress this for the affected students.

“The Minister must listen to students and their views on how to resolve this – be that scheduling another set of oral exams for students who wish to sit them again, affording the SEC flexibility in marking the oral exams in a way that reflect the ability of the student, or providing mitigation in terms of access to third level places. All options need to be explored.

“This will be very worrying and distressing news for students this morning, who are in the middle of their Leaving Cert written exams.  The Minister must recognise the potential severity of this situation, and provide reassurances to all students.

“We know that a significant number of students have been penalised through no fault of their own. The Department of Education and the SEC cannot let this lie. I have sought a meeting with the Minister to discuss how she can resolve this in the fairest way possible for the students who have been affected."

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