CAO Round 1 offer may get delayed till Friday 9th September due to late release of result of Leaving Certificate.
This would mean that the offers would be several days later than last year, putting further pressure on the timeline for the first years starting college.
The tentative date for the CAO offer was discussed after it was confirmed that the results of the Leaving Certificate would be released on Friday, September 2.
There was speculation that this year’s CAO Round 1 offer would come on Tuesday, September 6, reflecting the incident last year, when the results were released on Friday, September 3.
However, it has emerged that this year the CAO may not allow the CAO to offer the time of transmission of the Leaving Certificate result data till Friday, September 9 – a full week after the release of the results.
Even the extension of CAO Round 1 offer till 6th September was affecting the college start dates for freshers.
Monday 5th September is the normal college reopening date for students released and, if results and offers were not delayed this year, freshers could expect to start.
UCD confirmed that it had set 26 September as the tuition start date for the first year, with orientation beginning 19 September.
Other higher education institutions would have broadly similar contingency plans.
However, as it turned out later, if September 9 is now the likely date for the first round of proposals, it will add to the pressure for both colleges and students. Based on Round 1 on 9 September, the date of acceptance will be 14 September, followed by Round 2 on 19 September, with acceptances on 21 September.
The State Examination Commission (SEC) has to face challenges on several fronts regarding the release of results.
Traditionally, they issue in mid-August, but they have been delayed to 2020, 2021 and 2022 due to the extraordinary Leaving Certificate regime due to COVID.
One reason is the full meeting of the exam, the second – starting from June 30 – for students who were hit by COVID, or who could not appear for the exam in June or any other extraordinary medical reason, or due to bereavement.
Hundreds of candidates have not been able to take one or more exams in the first sitting due to COVID, which means thousands of individual papers will come up for grading in July.
There is also a shortage of testers, compounded by some of the people who have signed up for jobs that come with Covid.
The third issue that contributed to the late release of results was the guarantee for the students that the grades, overall, would not be lower than that of the previous year. This will require data analysis after the papers are marked and is likely to involve some overall adjustment for grades.
The Union of Students in Ireland (USI) said a late release of results would have a “negative effect” on new students.
Megan O’Connor, USI’s vice president and vice president of educational affairs, said it would have an “extremely disruptive effect on students’ learning.”
She pointed to the possibility of a shorter, more intensive first semester for first-year students, who “may lose out on the reading week, or institutions may have to delay first-semester assessments until after the Christmas break.” “.
Ms Thornton’s remarks were made before it emerged that CAO Round 1 might be even later than she expected.
Based on the proposals coming in a few days before 9 September, she said there will be “an incredibly tight timeline between the results and the start of the academic year”.
She continued: “Some students will be faced with the impossible choice of starting college on orientation with their classmates or waiting for an appeal to enter a higher preference course and gain admission. After two years of extremely hard time it’s just that. There is more disruption.
“With the educational impact on students, this will inevitably make it even more difficult for students to secure safe and affordable housing near their chosen one.”