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Repeating the Leaving is an option, but grades are likely to be lower in 2023

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Students should carefully consider all aspects of repeating the Leaving before making a choice

Students should carefully consider all aspects of repeating the Leaving before making a choice

Students should carefully consider all aspects of repeating the Leaving before making a choice

Repeating the Leaving Cert is always an option, but students need to consider any such possibility very carefully.

It has been another year of inflated grades and the big question for those who may be thinking of repeating is ‘can I do any better next time?’

In normal times, repeating can pay off, but we have not been in normal times and nobody knows what the spread of grades will look like next year.

Education minister Norma Foley has announced there will be no ‘cliff edge’ drop from the high grade profiles of 2020-2022, but even a gentle slide in 2023 would mean results overall will be lower than this year. So, anyone repeating could find themselves worse off.

Another question is ‘why did I not achieve what I had hoped this year?’ in terms of career aspirations.

It’s worth looking at different ways to move forward. You may not be beginning your career journey where you had hoped, but you can still work towards the same end point. Even if the CAO offer you received is not your first choice, it may get you to where you want to go.

Options to repeat are limited. Returning to school is at the discretion of the principal and most schools do not offer it.

There are also the so-called ‘grind schools’, which offer the Leaving Certificate course over one year. These are an expensive option and are not available countrywide.

Some further education colleges, which operate under local education and training boards (ETBs), offer a repeat year and fees are much lower than in grind schools.

Aoife Walsh is a guidance counsellor at Malahide Community School, Co Dublin


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