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Smiles all round as Irish higher-level is plain sailing

Smiles all round as Irish higher-level is plain sailing

Students at the all-Irish Coláiste Daibhéid in Cork City were pleased with the first Junior Certificate Irish papers.


All 40 of the city centre school’s Junior Certificate candidates took yesterday’s higher-level exam, said deputy principal Richel Ní Longaigh.

Bronagh Ní Tornáil from Blarney said Paper 1 in the morning was “grand”, and thought the listening test at the beginning was particularly easy.

“I was nervous going in but it was grand afterwards, once you get in there everything is fine,” said Bronagh.

Her classmate, Aoife Nic Ruairí from Douglas, was also pleased with the morning’s higher-level exam, but felt Paper 2 in the afternoon might be a bit more stressful.

“It’s going to be harder alright, but it should be okay because we’ve been learning through Irish.

“It definitely gives us an advantage on other students,” she said.

So much so, in fact, she thought Irish Paper 1 was easier than the equivalent English exam on the first day of the Junior Certificate 24 hours earlier. One exam she was not looking forward to, however, is history next week.

“There’s so much writing and learning involved,” she said.

For Dean Ó Torpa, yesterday morning’s Irish Paper 1 was also plain sailing “There’s more pressure in the afternoon. The poetry particularly is harder,” he said.
But the teenager from Mahon was glad to have the first couple of exams behind him. “I thought English was okay as well.”

After all the pressure and build-up, said Bronagh, starting the Junior Certificate was like sitting any summer tests.

“There’s so much pressure on us to do well in the Junior Cert but when you get there, it’s just like another test,” agreed Dean.

Both he and Aoife must wait until the music exam on Wednesday week, June 20, before the Junior Certificate is over.

But Bronagh has a much quicker sweep, as she finishes next Thursday after her science exam.

All three have 11 subjects to take exams in, but students starting the Junior Certificate course in two years should have no more than eight exam subjects, an idea that this group welcomes.

“It’s a better idea, then after Junior Cert you can choose your other subjects for the Leaving,” said Bronagh.

A more immediate change, taking effect this year, is the allocation of 40% of marks for Leaving Certificate Irish to the oral test, instead of the 25% previously given to it.

“We’re learning everything through Irish already so we’ll hopefully have an advantage over everyone,” said Dean.
 
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