Pupils' academic reports to be shared


SECOND-LEVEL schools will receive a full report card on all new entrants under new rules announced by Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn.

The new “education passport”, which details a child’s academic record at primary school, will also be made available to parents from September. It will include results from standardised tests in literacy and numeracy taken in sixth class.

The new procedure is designed to help second-level schools identify children who might need additional support to improve their literacy and numeracy skills.

The initiative is part of the national literacy and numeracy strategy; this was put in place last year after Ireland’s ranking in literacy slumped in an international league table.

Mr Quinn said the new report card will only be made available to a second-level school after a child has accepted a place there. The information, he said, cannot be used to cherry-pick the best performing pupils or to exclude those who may have learning difficulties.

Under new rules, each post-primary principal must give his counterpart at primary level the names of all students accepted for enrolment. In turn, the principal of each primary school is required to send a copy of the end-of-year report card, including the information from standardised literacy and numeracy tests taken in sixth class, to the second-level school.

Reporting templates have been developed for this purpose by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment. In broad terms parents are informed how their child’s performance relates to the national average.

Mr Quinn said: “Literacy and numeracy are among the most important skills taught in our schools. A child has to learn to read in order to be able to read to learn. These skills are fundamental to a person’s ability to succeed in education, to gain fulfilling employment and to lead a satisfying and rewarding life.”