Junior Certificate School Programme

HE student The Junior Certificate School Programme aims to provide a framework that assists schools and teachers in making the Junior Certificate more accessible to those young people who may find it difficult to engage with the curriculum in school. The programme is a student-centered intervention within the Junior Certificate programme, which attempts to help young people to experience real success and benefit from their time in school, to develop a positive self-image and enjoy the experience of improvement and success. There are two levels of assessment in the Junior Certificate School Programme:
  1. Junior Certificate Examination.  Students are encouraged to take up to seven subjects in the Junior Certificate Examination.  Every effort is made to support students through ordinary or foundation level in these subjects.
  2. Student Profile System.  The profile system consists of a series of statements which confirm that the student knows a topic or can perform a skill.  Each statement is broken down into a number of short-term goals or learning objectives which describe in greater detail the particular concept or skill that the student has acquired.  The Department of Education and Science then accredits these statements.
The overall aim of assessment is to give positive, affirmative and encouraging feedback to the students.  The emphasis is on success rather than on failure. While recognising that all students are unique individuals with different learning interests, strengths, ways of learning and challenges, some students need additional support and guidance which this programme offers. In line with best practice, students who are selected for JCSP may be potential early school leavers who have difficulties in the areas of literacy and numeracy; have learning disabilities which hinder them from fully participating in and benefiting from the junior cycle; show clear signs of not coping with the experience of school at junior cycle; and whose attendance and/or behaviour and attitude indicate a considerable degree of disengagement from school. Using this criteria, selection is based in October on Entrance Assessment, Primary School reports and students’ level of work and engagement. At all times, each student’s continued participation in the programme is kept under review. On completion of the programme, students also receive a profile which is an official record of their achievements from the Department of Education and Skills. For more information:  www.jcsp.slss.ie and www.ncca.ie.

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