Dáil Éireann - Volume 495 - 22 October, 1998

Written Answers - Junior Certificate Examination.

50. Mr. Gilmore asked the Minister for Education and Science if he will take the necessary steps to ensure the earlier publication of the junior certificate results to allow adequate time for decisions to be made in regard to options and subject choice; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [20660/98]

Minister for Education and Science (Mr. Martin): The dates on which the results of the certificate examinations are issued are a function of the timing of the actual examinations and the time required for the marking of scripts and processing of the results. While my Department will continue to make every effort to issue results as early as possible it must be recognised that there are real constraints on making any significant improvement in respect of the junior certificate if the issue date in the case of the leaving certificate is not to be affected. Given that there is a finite pool of suitably qualified examiners my Department ensures the number of examiners engaged in the leaving certificate marking process is adequate to enable the result deadlines to be met. This is possible because the later issue of junior certificate results provides some latitude in relation to providing additional time where necessary to the pool of examiners available for junior certificate marking. Ultimately the time required for the proper execution of the marking process is a direct function of the number of available examiners and the number of scripts to be examined. The Deputy will agree that priority must be given to the issue of the leaving certificate results.