Dáil Éireann - Volume 643 - 11 December, 2007
Written Answers. - State Examinations.
Deputy Richard Bruton Deputy Richard Bruton
Deputy Richard Bruton asked the Minister for Education and Science if she will reconsider the decision to timetable chemistry after English paper two due to the extra pressure it will place on students studying this subject of considerable national priority; and if she will restore chemistry to its position later in the schedule when it is not accompanying a core universal subject. [33833/07]
Deputy Mary Hanafin Deputy Mary Hanafin
Deputy Mary Hanafin: The new Leaving Certificate examination schedule for 2008 has been agreed with a working group representing the Partners in Education, and is designed to reduce the demand on students especially during the first week of the examinations. It advances Chemistry, which is sat by some 7,000 students, and Geography, sat by some 25,000 students, to Thursday and Friday respectively of the first week, which, along with Home Economics which is sat by some 12,000 students, ensures that the majority of students get a break of at least one half day during this intensive phase.
The revised timetable ensures that the significant writing pressure that was experienced by all students on day one has now been reduced. Whereas unfortunately chemistry is only taken by 7,000 students it does require a different set of skills and thought processes and so was considered a balance to English.
There are no plans to change the timetable for 2008. However, each year, when drawing up the timetable for the following year, the State Examinations Commission invites the input of the Part ners in Education so that their experience can inform the formulation of the next year’s schedule. I also plan to engage in a consultation with Leaving Cert students after their exams to get their views on the new mix of papers.
Dáil Éireann 643 Written Answers. State Examinations.