Leaving Cert student withdraws court challenge after getting place on dentistry course

Martha Woods had claimed standardisation had unfairly impacted on her ambition to pursue career

Mr Justice Charles Meenan said he was pleased with the outcome and wished Ms Woods every success at university and in her career.

Mr Justice Charles Meenan said he was pleased with the outcome and wished Ms Woods every success at university and in her career.

 

A young woman who got 613 points in the 2019 Leaving Certificate has withdrawn her High Court challenge over the manner in which Leaving Cert grades were standardised this year after getting a place on her course of choice.

Martha Woods, who claimed standardisation had unfairly impacted on her ambition to pursue a dentistry career, has withdrawn her case because she has since secured a place on her chosen course, dentistry in UCC.

In her case, Ms Woods, Millbrook House, Murragh, Enniskeane, Co Cork, had said the points for dentistry in UCC rose this year from 590 points to 613, the final applicants for that course all had 613 points, places were allocated by random selection and she failed to get a place.

When her action came before Mr Justice Charles Meenan last week, he accepted it was a “very important” matter but adjourned it for a week after expressing concern about the courts’ ability to accommodate early hearings of a multiplicity of cases concerning the 2020 Leaving Cert grading process.

When the case returned before the judge today, he was told Ms Woods has obtained a place on the UCC Dentistry course and was as a result withdrawing her case.

Ms Woods, represented by Pearse Sreenan SC, instructed by Amy Connolly, of Cantillons Solicitors, had brought the judicial review proceedings against the Minister for Education, State Examinations Commission, the State, CAO and UCC.

Mr Justice Meenan said he was pleased with the outcome and wished Ms Woods every success at university and in her career.

Separately, the judge has said he will treat another case initiated earlier this month as the lead case addressing issues with the 2020 Leaving Cert process and hoped to give that an early hearing date.

That case is by Áine Finnegan, from Fairview, Dublin, who missed out on a place in Medicine at Trinity College Dublin by two points after three of her calculated grades were reduced.

The judge expected the outcome of the Finnegan case would decide some or all of the issues raised in other cases, adding parties in other cases may seek to be joined to the lead case.