Junior Cert to be renamed as Junior Cycle Student Award (JCSA)

The new name for the Junior Certificate has been revealed.

From September, pupils will study for the JCSA - or Junior Cycle Student Award. This year's intake of first year students will be the last to sit the old-style Junior Cert.

Education Minister Ruairi Quinn says it will put students, rather than exams, at the centre of the three-year process.

"The overhaul of junior cycle is long overdue and much needed," the minister said in a statement.

"However, I do acknowledge that many teachers have legitimate concerns about how these new changes will be introduced in schools.

The minister said a new working group on Junior Cycle Reform will meet for the first time this Friday, January 17.

"This working group will be a forum where the concerns of the partners can be heard and addressed over the next number of months and years," he added.

The group is made up of representatives from the teacher unions, the ASTI and TUI, management bodies, parents, the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment and the Department of Education and Skills.

"The current Junior Cycle curriculum has been in place for 25 years without any fundamental reform," Minister Quinn continued.

"There is compelling evidence that it is failing some young people as significant numbers of first years do not make progress in the key building blocks of learning: English and Maths.

"The new JCSA will address these problems and ensure students become informed teenagers and citizens with the tools to achieve their full potential."

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