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The process for accredited grades for Leaving Cert 2021 begins

Now that the final day for completion of any assessments associated with the accredited grades process has passed. Teachers will shorty begin awarding estimated marks to their Leaving Cert 2021 students, based on what they would expect them to achieve if they sat the exam paper.  Most students  however are also sitting exams.

Even if a student hasn’t opted for calculated grades, teachers are required to generate an estimated percentage mark for all students.

The estimated mark given to a student in a subject will be based on the best possible judgement of teachers. This is very important to remember.

Many students spent much of the year fearing that if they made any mistakes in their work or had a bad day in a test, it would go against them if they didn't get to sit their exams. This is not the case and the most recent documents released by the State Examinations Commission (SEC) confirm this. It's the teacher’s professional judgement that is most important.

Teachers take into account a wide range of evidence to help them in forming this opinion. Evidence includes their interaction with students in the classroom, the questions asked and answers offered, as well as class tests, project work, oral and aural work collected over the past two years.  Behaviour will not be taken into consideration in any way.

In summary, the percentage will be the teacher's educated opinion. They'll ask themselves questions like what, to the best of my knowledge, would this student achieve if they sat the exam, with all the accommodations that have been made? What have they gotten in class and would they do better in June? Have they been improving?

Teachers won't be using a mathematical formula.

Once the teachers have assigned their marks to each student, the grades will be put through a school alignment process. This process gives teachers the opportunity to discuss their estimated marks with their colleagues and helps to ensure that teachers are using the same standards to come up with the marks.

These estimated marks will then be submitted to the SEC and will undergo a process of national standardisation. It means students may be marked down but equally the estimated mark may be increased.

Leaving Cert students now have four weeks until the exams begin. Although the end of year celebrations will look very different this year, all schools are working very hard to mark the graduation of the class of 2021, the class that really has had the most extraordinary senior cycle.

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