February 8, 2016

Information on Junior Cycle English for Parents of Second Years

February 4th, 2016


Dear Parent/Guardian,


With the changes to Junior Cycle English there is now a move away from a final exam that accounts for 100% of the final grade to an on-going style of assessment.

The change that has been put in place for English in the current second year class of 2015/2016 is as follows:

  • There is now 10% of the final grade to be achieved in on-going assessment,
  • in addition to this, there is also a grading comment that will be placed on the Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement (JCPA).

The JCPA will be awarded for the first time in Autumn 2017 and will display results in the traditional sense as well as displaying a broader picture of the students’ achievement in other areas of learning after their Junior Cert.

These assessments are to be known as Classroom Based Assessments (CBAs) with one conducted in second year and one conducted in third year. These CBA’s will be completed in school time during a nationally assigned date and they will be specified by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment. The CBA Task is worth 10% of the final grade will take place in December of third year during two 40 minute classroom periods. This will be a written assessment that will be graded by the Department of Education examiners with the students final Junior Cert Exam.

The English Department here in Desmond have compiled an information sheet for you overleaf to keep you up to date with the changes relevant to your son/daughter.


In Desmond College, our current 2nd year students will do:

  • Oral presentation based on research from Friday 29th of April – May 20th 2016
  • A comment will appear on your child’s Junior Cycle Profile Achievement after their Junior Cert Results.
    • ✓ There is great freedom with the topics for oral as they can present on a hobby, an event, a person of interest, any research into an area of interest or a performance piece can be completed.
    • ✓ The Oral Communication Assessment (presentation) will have to be 3 mins long and presented in the class.
    • ✓ It will be graded by the English Department within the school.
      Teachers from the English Department will then meet at a Subject Learning and Assessment Review Meeting following each CBA. At this meeting teachers will share and discuss samples of their students’ work in order to form a common understanding of the quality of student learning and ensure fairness in the awarding of comments.


Please remember that we are currently practicing different forms of Oral/presentation with all 2nd year students in English classes so we would encourage you to chat about these and encourage them in their research of the topic and the presenting of it at home.


Friday 2nd December 2016:
2nd Classroom based Assessment, English Teachers will help students to choose 4 pieces of their best work and they will be assessed by the English Department. Again the comment will appear on their Junior Cycle Profile cert after their Junior Cert.

5th-9th December 2016:
Classroom based Assessment Task is an assessment set by the Department of Education and will be carried out in English classes between the 5th-9th December 2016.This assessment will form 10% of the overall grade and will be sent back to the Department to be marked by independent examiners with students’ final Junior cert exam.


The English Department have been preparing and informing our students of any relevant information and we will keep parents notified of any important dates and assessment information.

Please contact any of the relevant English teachers if you need any further information. See www.juniorcycle.ie for more details.

We will inform you of any further updates or changes implemented by the Department of Education if they arise.

Desmond College English Department