Fee-paying students more likely to go straight to college

The research from the Department of Eduction says that more students from fee-paying secondary schools progress directly to higher education.

NEW RESEARCH PUBLISHED by the Department of Education shows that students from fee-charging secondary schools are more likely to go directly to higher education.

The research shows that 66 per cent of students who attended fee-charging schools progressed directly to higher education compared to 47 per cent from the non-fee charging secondary sector.

It also shows that 42 per cent of students from comprehensive schools, 38 per cent from community schools and 34 per from the vocational sector went directly to higher education.


Overall, the study found that over half of students who were enrolled in the final year of senior cycle in a Department of Education & Skills-supported post-primary school in 2010 went directly to higher education.

A further 28 per cent progressed to further education, training or continued second-level education and 10 per cent took up employment, while 7 per cent had Social Welfare claims.

For students attending DEIS schools, 24 per cent went onto higher education compared to 49 per cent overall from non-DEIS status schools. Over 57 per cent of pupils attending all-Irish schools also enrolled in higher education courses.

Early leavers

The Department also tracked early leavers who left department-supported post-primary schools between the 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 academic years.

The Early Leavers – What Next? report shows that 57 per cent of the 7,713 early school leavers left after the Junior Certificate cycle or enrolment in Transition Year.

Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn TD, said that the research will enhance the information used by the Department to plan for the future education needs of school leavers.

It found that 55 per cent of these early leavers went on to further education or training or continued in second-level education in Ireland.

Female early school leavers left at an earlier stage than their male classmates – over 20 per cent left after the first or second year of the Junior Certificate or JCSP cycle, compared to less than 20 per cent of males. Another 25 per cent of females left after year three of Junior Certificate/JCSP, compared to 21 per cent of males.

A further 14 per cent of the early leavers were enrolled in education or training outside of the State and amongst the early leavers, 6.6 per cent had Social Welfare claims. Another 6 per cent had joined the workforce during 2010.

School Completers – What’s Next? found that of the 54,824 school leavers that year, 44 per cent went on to study for a Higher Education course in a HEA funded Institution.

Another 20 per cent enrolled in PLC courses and 5 per cent repeated the Leaving Certificate. An estimated 4 per cent enrolled in colleges abroad, predominantly in the UK, including Northern Ireland.

Some 55 per cent of early leavers went on to further education or training or continued second-level education in Ireland, while a further 13.9 per cent were enrolled in education or training outside of the State.

Of those early leavers who did not continue in the education sector, 6.6 per cent had social welfare activity at the end of December 2010. Meanwhile, of the remainder, 6.1 per cent found employment during 2010.

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