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 reveal an increase in the number sitting the exams in Laois compared with 2018. T
In total, 2,134 secondary school students will sit State exams in Laois this year. This is up 4% on last year.
The biggest number of students will sit the Junior Cert but the number of students in Laois sitting the Leaving Cert and Leaving Cert applied is almost 1,000.
In total, 1,141 students are expected to sit the Junior Cert. A total of 939 pupils will sit the Leaving Cert exam - up from 904 last year and 875 in 2017.
A total of 54 students will take the Leaving Cert Applied exams.
Slightly more males than females are due to sit exams in Laois
The exams get underway on Wednesday morning, June 5 at schools in Portlaoise, Portarlington, Mountmellick, Ballinakill, Mountrath, Clonaslee, Rathdowney and Knockbeg.
Students in both Junior and Leaving cycles start with English.
For reasons of candidate wellbeing, the 2019 Leaving Certificate written examination timetable has been extended beyond the traditional 13-day window. In 2019 the examinations will take place over 15 days concluding on Tuesday, June 25.
The written examinations in the Leaving Certificate Applied programme finish on Thursday, June 13. The exams run until Wednesday, June 19 for Junior Certificate subjects.
The Leaving Cert results will be published on Tuesday, August 13 while the Junior Cert results will be out in September.
In total, 120,967 are entered to start exams nationally this week - 64,723 in Junior Cert and 56,882 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 2019.
“The state examinations are a significant step in their educational journey for candidates, their families and schools. The support of families and the wider community for candidates sitting examinations is very important. For its part, the Commission will continue its work in ensuring that the examinations meet the highest standards of fairness and transparency.
"This year, we have introduced two measures to assist the wellbeing of candidates. The Leaving Certificate examination timetable has been extended by two days to minimise the possibility of subject clashes so that candidates are given the best chance in the examinations. In addition, Leaving Certificate candidates who, sadly, suffer the bereavement of a close relative during the examinations can opt to defer their examinations for up to 3 days, with the alternative examinations taking place in early July.
“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,” he said.
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 5,200 examination centres across the country over the course of the examination period.