Laois defies national trend as number sitting Leaving and Junior Cert exams continues to rise

Exams set to start on Wednesday, June 6

Conor Ganly


Conor Ganly


Over 2,000 students to sit Junior and Leaving Cert exams in Offaly

This Wednesday marks a big day for more than 2,000 students and their families from across Laois as they begin their Leaving and Junior Certificate exams.

Figures from the State Examinations Commission also reveal an increase in the number sitting the exams in Laois compared with 2017. The total sitting the exams in Laois also exceeds 2,000 for the first time.

In total, 2,051 secondary school students will sit State exams in Laois this year. Slightly more males than females are registered.

Most of these, 1,108, will sit the Junior Cert. The number of candidates is up by more than 100 on last year..

A total of 904 pupils will sit the Leaving Cert exam - up from 875 in 2017.

A total of 39 students will take the Leaving Cert Applied exams.

While the number of students taking the exams nationally is falling, the trend is upwards in Laois in line with the population boom.

Laois has moved ahead of Offaly and is catching Kilkenny in the league table of numbers sitting the exams.

The exams get underway on Wednesday morning, June 6 at schools in Portlaoise, Portarlington, Mountmellick, Ballinakill, Mountrath, Clonaslee, Rathdowney and Knockbeg.

Students in both Junior and Leaving cyles start with English.

The Junior Cert exams end on June 21 while the Leaving Cert finishes on June 23. The Leaving Cert Applied programme ends on June 16.

The Leaving Cert results will be published on Wednesday, August 16, while the Junior Cert results will be out in September.
In total, 120,967 are entered to start exams nationally this week - 62,948 in Junior Cert and 55,255 at Leaving Cert and 2,744 Leaving Cert Applied.

First round offers for places third level colleges are made on August 20.


Mr. Pat Burke, Chairman of the State Examinations Commission (SEC), and his fellow Commissioners extend their very best wishes on behalf of the SEC to all sitting the state examinations in 2018.

“The state examinations are a milestone for students, their families and schools. The reassurance of families and the wider community is an essential support for students sitting examinations. For its part, the Commission will continue its work in ensuring that the examinations meet the highest standards of fairness and transparency.

The Board and staff of the State Examinations Commission are very aware of the effort which students, their families
and schools have invested in the forthcoming examinations and extend their best wishes to all”.

Over 4 million examination papers have been securely distributed to the examination superintendents involved in supervising the written examinations.

The examinations will be held in some 5,223 examination centres across the country over the course of the examination period.