Statement regarding Leaving Certificate 2020 Postponement and Options

Statement regarding Leaving Certificate 2020 Postponement and Options

Statement regarding Leaving Certificate 2020 Postponement and Options
11 May 2020

The National Parents Council post primary (NPCPP) is the voice of, and advocate for, all parents and guardians of young people in post-primary education in Ireland and ensures that our parents’ voice is represented at the national level.

NPCPP welcomes the announcement on Friday 8th May by the Minister for Education and Skills, the clarity it brings to Established Leaving Certificate, Leaving Certificate Applied and Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme students and the consequential relief of stress for those students and their families.

NPCPP’s statement, issued on May 5th, called for urgent recognition that options to a seated Leaving Certificate commencing on July 29th needed to be announced to allow students to progress to the next stage of their education and future lives. NPCPP wishes to thank Minister Joe McHugh and all participants in the Department of Education and Skill’s Advisory group for their prompt action in addressing this.

While this announcement brings much relief for many students and parents there are clarifications required around aspects of the planned process and how it will affect, or be implemented for, some students with particular needs or who may be functioning in irregular or different circumstances. NPCPP will continue to present a strong voice for parents and students in the ongoing consultations of the advisory group of stakeholders and will continue to advocate for all students and their families to ensure that fairness, equity and equality is achieved through the options offered and in the process and outcomes delivered.

The focus of the new plans to ensure that students can move on to the next phase of their lives with as little delay and disruption as possible is appreciated.

It is understood that the seated Leaving Certificate examinations will take place at the earliest and safest opportunity to ensure that those students who choose to avail of this option may also move forward as soon as possible.

Third level colleges and universities must demonstrate support for Leaving Certificate students who face the current difficulties and delays attached to seated exams. A college run matriculation style exam, where appropriate, may be of assistance towards decisions on entry to certain courses.

We recommend that Leaving Certificate parents refer to ‘A guide to Calculated Grade for Leaving Certificate students 2020’ which is available on the Department of Education and Skills website: and which will assist towards informing those concerned about the process now offered.

We welcome the oversight process, appeals procedure and options indicated in this document. NPCPP accept that there is no panacea in the extremely difficult conditions presented by COVID-19.

All students, irrespective of the option they choose, must be treated equally with regards to their choice of college, course or career.

We will continue to engage with all partners in education, students and parents to ensure that a strong parent voice is heard in all discussions.

NPCPP are acutely aware of the educational needs and disruptions experienced by our current 5th year students. All have lost classroom time and guidance in the first year of their two-year senior cycle.

2nd year students have equally lost out on tuition time in their Junior Cycle. Students at all levels have encountered difficulties due to COVID-19 and we must ensure that this is recognised and addressed in a fair and equitable manner moving forward.

NPCPP continues to offer support to parents and students through our website, online and through ongoing proactive participation in the Advisory Group which has been put in place to inform and assist decision making in education during these difficult times.

The annual NPCPP Leaving Certificate Helpline 2020 will also run when results are issued to further assist students with queries about grades, points and progression options.

The mental wellness of students and their families remains a primary concern as we endeavour to cope with the difficulties presented by COVID-19.

We must continue to ensure that no student is penalised due to the inadequacies of alternatives totheir normal schooling and educational supports as a result of this pandemic. There remains much to do to ensure that students and their families can return to relative normality in education as soon as possible and to facilitate minimal negative effects on our students pathways to their future during and following COVID-19.

NPCPP will continue to strongly represent and advocate for parents as our nation continues to address the difficulties caused by this dreadful pandemic.


Contact/Queries to NPCPP Communications Director
Paul Rolston (Direct: 087 2621588 or

The National Parents Council Post Primary (NPCpp) is a voluntary group that gives national voice to parents of students in post primary schools in Ireland. We work as an umbrella group for parent associations in the secondary sector of the Irish education system. We unite parents and ensure their participation and inclusion at all levels of the post primary education system. The National Parents Council Post Primary has a Board of ten members who work without remuneration on behalf of parents and children.

Contact Information

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Phone: +353 (1) 862 3346