Friday, 22 May 2020 00:33

Leaving Certificate - Calculated Grades – Detailed Guidance Issued

Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD on May 21st 2020 announced the publication of detailed guidance on the new system of Calculated Grades for this year’s Leaving Certificate.

The document has been sent to all post-primary schools, to provide teachers and principals with information on the process of estimating marks for students to receive Calculated Grades. 

The guide has been produced in consultation with education partners following the decision to postpone Leaving Certificate 2020 examinations, taken as a protective measure as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The full text Minster McHugh’s press release can viewed on the Department of Education & Skills (DES) website by clicking here


The document, published May 21st "Guide for Schools on Providing Estimated Percentage Marks and Class Rank Orderings" is available by clicking here  and is also attached below


As part of the process of Calculated Grades, Leaving Certificate students will have access to an online portal from early next week where they will be required to confirm the subject level at which they initially entered for the examinations or to change to a lower level.  The link to this portal will be posted here when it becomes available.


Updated FAQs are also being made available here

Information for students and parents/guardians on Calculated Grades for Leaving Certificate 2020 is being prepared and when available, will be published on the Government Website


Among the information outlined in the guidance document;

  • Advice on the range of information that teachers should use to inform the school’s judgements about estimated marks.
  • Guidance on how teachers can work together to ensure alignment of marks across students and classes in schools.
  • Details about how principals will oversee the process within schools.
  • Rules around canvassing setting out how schools will be required to report instances to the Department.
  • External candidates – the Department will look at these students on a case by case basis and will be flexible. Every effort will be made to provide an estimated mark where there is sufficient credible evidence of the student’s achievement.
  • Indemnity – as teachers and school leaders will be implementing the Calculated Grades process in schools on behalf of the Minister, arrangements have been put in place to extend a State indemnity to them and to the boards of management of their schools.


  • Further supports and information for students, teachers and principals in relation to the implementation of the Calculated Grades model are being provided.
  • The system of Calculated Grades is being offered to all 2020 Leaving Certificate candidates. Students will have the opportunity to appeal their results.
  • Students can also opt to sit the Leaving Certificate exams when they are held, which will be when public health advice permits.
  • The timing of the results of the Calculated Grades process will run as close as possible to the usual results system.