Dáil Éireann - Volume 537 - 29 May, 2001

Written Answers. - Transition Year Options.

401. Mr. Creed asked the Minister for Education and Science if he will clarify the situation regarding Department policy as to the availability of transition year options; if schools have discretion regarding its availability; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [15779/01]

Minister for Education and Science (Dr. Woods): A three year senior cycle was introduced as an option for second level schools from September 1994. The programmes now available at senior cycle include a one year transition year programme and a two year leaving certificate programme with three orientations, the estab[527] lished leaving certificate, the leaving certificate applied and the leaving certificate vocational programme.

It is for the authorities of individual schools to decide whether to offer the transition year programme. In making this choice, a school may decide to offer the programme to all its fourth year cohort or to some of those students. Transition year programmes are offered at present in more than 500 schools to some 23,000 students. A further 15 schools have indicated their intention to introduce the programme for the first time in the next school year, 2001-2.