Teachers and school managers will be protected from any lawsuit that might bring a student or dissatisfied parents against them
Any parent who attempts to persuade a teacher of their child’s estimated grades by pressure or canvassing will report their behaviour to the Department of Education.
This is part of the Leaving Certificate guidelines issued to post-primary schools.
Teachers in the 40-page document tell no discussion whatsoever about any student-related topic or the process.
They are asked to keep a record of any follow-up contact and write down the person and bring it to the school and the principal must pass the information to the Department.
Teachers and school managers will be protected from any lawsuit that might bring a student or dissatisfied parents against them.
They have this protection because they act properly on behalf of the State, it is said.
But they must cooperate with the State if a case is to be defended in a court of law and show that the guidelines have been strictly adhered to.
The document has the agreement of the teacher unions and school management organizations and states that no parent, guardian or pupil can inspire, pressure, influence or compel teachers or the school and cannot interfere with the new model of assessment.
It sets out in detail the approach that teachers and principals need to follow when making decisions about their students’ Leaving Certificate results.
The guidelines set out the protocol to be followed in the event of any parent, guardian or pupil conducting any lobbying.
As a further safeguard, the principal must conform to the Department that the assessment for the student, in that case, has been properly and independently obtained.
Under this year’s assessment process, a school will award a student a mark and its place in the order of merit. This data will be calculated in the new unit in the Department of Education, the executive office.
The document gives guidance in the event of a conflict with a teacher who teaches one of her family – and the additional steps involved in a case.
Teachers must inform the principal of this conflict of interest and if there is no other teacher dealing with this matter in the school these marks must be signed by the assistant principal.
Students will indicate on an online portal whether at Ordinary or Higher level they wish to be assessed. The teachers are asked to provide a respectful grace for all their pupils, but the later pupils will have the opportunity to opt-in or opt for a written examination.
It is important to note that in relation to facsimile examinations undertaken by the students in the spring, some of these are marked soft and some very rigorous.
It is stated that a teacher must exercise their professional judgment about the availability of such data, but not under their control during the assessment.
Only the work is done by a student before 12 March can be taken into account when making the assessment. Any coursework that a student has been working on for the Examinations Commission can be included.
Schools are asked to provide the “best estimate” for the mark that pupil is “likely” to get and not the mark he would expect but to have a “good day”.
A teacher is asked to be alert to ‘unconscious bias’ such as a student’s socio-economic background or family.
The document states that teachers and schools will be provided with training on the new process and have not yet completed the assessment.