Thursday, 5 March 2020
Department of Education and Skills
Junior Cycle Reform
223. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the status of the review of the junior cycle; his views on whether the junior cycle is a good preparation for the senior cycle; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3012/20]
The National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) has recently issued a request for tender for a study on the implementation and impact of the introduction of the Framework for Junior Cycle.
This research study will start a broad evaluation of the implementation and impact of the developments involved, presenting a unique opportunity to engage with teachers, students and schools as they introduce the developments at Junior Cycle; it will enable the NCCA to document and learn in detail about the experience of Junior Cycle change and, in the process, gain insights into the implementation and impact of the introduction of a new curriculum framework at Junior Cycle.
Overall, the study will contribute to increased understanding of the experiences of teachers, students and schools involved in this development and how these experiences shape and are shaped by schools as communities, institutions, and by policy making in this area in the wider education system.
The Framework for Junior Cycle gives students the opportunity to develop a wide range of knowledge and skills – to equip them for further learning, for work, for responsible and active citizenship, and for healthy living. It gives students better learning opportunities, and rewards and recognises non-academic performance and achievements, with a central focus on the student’s quality of life, well-being and mental health. In particular, learners are enabled to use and analyse information in new and creative ways, to investigate issues, to explore, to think for themselves, to be creative in solving problems and to apply their learning to new challenges and situations.
I am satisfied that the Framework for Junior Cycle provides students with an excellent foundation for progression to Senior Cycle.