Friday 23 February 2018

THE GOING TO COLLEGE PODCAST EP 1: Preparing for Leaving Cert Results Time

Celebrating the launch of the National Parents Council post primary (NPCpp) freephone Exam 2017 helpline are: Ruby Mc Alister, Louis Maxwell, Harry Gill, Bróna Harte, Robert McCormack and Clara Sinclair. The helpline – 1800 265-165 – opens on Wednesday and will run for six days over the period of the release of the Leaving Cert results and the publication of CAO Round 1 offers. The helpline is sponsored by the Irish Independent, the Department of Education and Skills, and eir. It will be staffed by members of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors and a representative of the grants agency, SUSI. Photo: Maxwells
Celebrating the launch of the National Parents Council post primary (NPCpp) freephone Exam 2017 helpline are: Ruby Mc Alister, Louis Maxwell, Harry Gill, Bróna Harte, Robert McCormack and Clara Sinclair. The helpline – 1800 265-165 – opens on Wednesday and will run for six days over the period of the release of the Leaving Cert results and the publication of CAO Round 1 offers. The helpline is sponsored by the Irish Independent, the Department of Education and Skills, and eir. It will be staffed by members of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors and a representative of the grants agency, SUSI. Photo: Maxwells

In the first of a four part podcast series, Going to College, the Irish Independent's John Walshe has advice for students and parents as they deal with the Leaving Cert results.

Joining John to give their advice and insights on how best to prepare at this time is guidance counsellor, Betty McLaughlin, Kevin Keane, TCD Students Union President, and Padraig Walsh, CEO of Quality & Qualifications Ireland.

"Students still going into the school in the morning to collect their results," explains McLaughlin.  "It's good for camaraderie and social support, though there is also the option of getting your results online from 12pm."

"I went into school and collected the envelope," Kevin Keane remembers.  "It’s nice to be back in that community where you’ve grown up and to collect your results with your friends."

2017 is also the year of the new results points system with eight different grades replacing the previous fourteen with new grades of H1-H8 for Higher Level and 01-02 for Ordinary Level and it 'will help people make more informed decisions' says QQI CEO, Padraig Walsh.

"It took a long time to develop this system and took quite a few iterations to develop.  The real intent was to eliminate the tight bands and to allow for broader entry to the system and give more scope to the marking," he explains.

Whilst 85% of students apply to go to college it must be remembered there are also other options available such as apprenticeships which are seeing an increased take-up and gender balance in recent years.

And while you're waiting the five days between your results and a CAO offer, don't forget that you've done the hard work and should just try and distract yourself and not worry too much about what lies ahead.

The four-part Going to College education podcast series is in association with QQI – promoting quality and accountability in Irish education and training.  Subscribe to the series on iTunes, SoundCloud, Stitcher or via the RSS Feed.

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