Thursday 19 July 2018

Four Junior Cert exams had to be amended after tragic drownings of two friends

Jack Kenneally and pal Shay Moloney in a rugby club photo
Jack Kenneally and pal Shay Moloney in a rugby club photo

Gordon Deegan

A total of four Junior Cert exams were amended for Ennis students following the tragic double drowning of two local 15-year-olds, the State Examinations Commission (SEC) confirmed.

Four weeks ago, Junior Cert students in Ennis were plunged into grief after teenagers Shay Moloney and Jack Kenneally drowned in a lake in an unused quarry, six days before the exams were due to start.

Shay lost his life trying to save his friend Jack on May 31.

A student at St Flannan's College, Shay was due to start his Junior Cert exams on June 6.

Earlier this month, the SEC confirmed it made changes to two exams and admitted missing one question in the higher level English paper that asked students to select the correct word in the sentence: 'I was not allowed/aloud to swim in the old quarry'.

Member of Clare Co Council Cllr Mary Howard (FG) said at the time it was "hugely unfortunate some of the friends of the two boys were faced with a question like this in their English exam".

With the exams concluded, the SEC has now confirmed it made changes to two further exams for Ennis students - Junior Cert ordinary level German and higher level Italian - following a 'rapid review' of all papers that resulted in a 'massive logistical operation' in reprinting papers for students in Ennis.

The SEC confirmed the changes were made to the ordinary level Irish exam and a question in section three of the civic, social and political education (CSPE) paper that was based on the work of the Irish Coast Guard Service.

The only other time the SEC has taken such action on changing exam questions for students was in the aftermath of the Navan bus crash in 2005, which claimed the lives of five school girls.

Irish Independent

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