Junior Cycle Reform

The new Junior Cycle features newly developed subjects and focuses on literacy, numeracy and key skills.

Key skills help learners develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes to face the many challenges in today’s world. They also support students in learning how to learn and to take responsibility for their own learning.

The Six Key Skills for the new Junior Cycle are:

Managing Myself – This skill helps learners understand themselves both as individuals and as learners so that they can develop personal goals and plans. It also helps them develop strategies to make considered decisions and, to take action and reflect on their progress.
Staying Well – This key skill recognises learners’ overall wellbeing must be supported alongside their intellectual development. Being healthy physically and emotionally being socially active and being able to take care of oneself, and of others helps learners become happy and confident.
Communicating – As well as developing literacy skills, it also develops learners’ confidence in communicating, expressing opinions, writing, making oral presentations and performing.
Being Creative– This skill enables learners’ to develop their imagination and creativity as they explore different ways of doing things and of thinking.
Working with Others– This skill helps learners to develop good relations and to appreciate the value of cooperating to reach both collective and personal goals.
Managing Information and Thinking – This key skill helps learners gradually improve their capacity to search for information from different sources. They also develop their skills in judging and discriminating between information types and sources and they develop strategies for organising information so that they can understand it and use it later. This skill also develops learners thinking skills.

Since 2014 we have introduced new specifications in English, Business Studies, Science, Gaeilge, Modern Foreign Languages and Visual Art. Specifications on Maths, Music, Geography, History and Home Economics are developed and begin in 2018. Simultaneously our school is examining and working on L2LP’s, Classroom Strategies, Leadership and Wellbeing. 

Information on Junior Cycle reform:


Subject Choices

Subjects on offer meet the variety of needs and interests of students and include subjects from the science(s), languages, civic/social, business and practical fields, together with core subjects such as English, Irish & Maths.


The following table indicates the projects or coursework that students of Junior Certificate must complete in different subject areas. The weighting percentage, starting and finishing dates for each item are also shown.

Subject Starting Date Finishing Date Percentage Marks Coursework Type
English 2nd Year/3rd Year 3rd Year Assessment Task for Marking by State Examinations Commission Class Based Assessment
Art, Craft and Design October April 80% Project
Materials Technology Wood November April 66% Project and folder
Materials Technology Metal November April 40% Project
Home Economics September of 2nd Year April of2nd Year 15% Project and Folder
CSPE 1st /2nd Year 3rd Year 60% Action Project and Folder
Science January April
6th Year
25% Folder of Experiments