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Mixing It Up

New subject changes for Junior Cert and Leaving Cert get the go ahead

New specifications for Maths, Home Economics, History, Music and Geography are set to go live from this month for Junior Cert students.

90382748_90382748 Leah Farrell / Leah Farrell / /

A RAFT OF subject changes for Ireland’s Leaving and Junior Certs are set to go live from this month.

New specifications for Maths, Home Economics, History, Music and Geography are set to go live from this month for Junior Cert students. It’s the fourth such action (and second to last) involved in the 2015 Framework for Junior Cycle.

The moves in those five subjects will see them aligned with international educational best practice following ‘extensive consultation and engagement with stakeholders’, according to the Department of Education.

The maths component, for example, is to be aligned with ‘international developments and good practice in mathematics education’, a spokesperson for the department said, while history will now be targeted at developing a student’s research skills, something universities have often cited as being lacking in new intakes of post Leaving Cert students, who subsequently struggle with the demands of third level academic life.

Geography, meanwhile, will now be targeted at developing students’ geographic literacy.

0529 Fine Gael Conference_90553430 Education Minister Richard Bruton Leah Farrell / Leah Farrell / /

Two new languages are also being introduced for junior cycle in certain schools – Korean and Lithuanian.

For Leaving Cert, 120 schools will be trialling the implementation of new subjects in Computer Science and Physical Education, while the ongoing rollout of a new political subject, Politics and Society, sees that subject now an option in almost 100 schools nationwide.

The new introductions have been broadly welcomed by the Minister for Education Richard Bruton, who says they represent an attempt to “equip children to excel in a modern world”.

“The changes coming in will focus more on the individual student, developing their capacity to analyse and discern, to problem solve and collaborate,” he said.

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