The Transition Year Programme promotes the personal, social, vocational and educational development of students and prepares them for their role as autonomous, participative and responsible members of society (Transition Year Guidelines, 1994, Department of Education & Skills).
It is a unique one year programme for students who have completed the Junior Certificate. It provides a bridge to enable them to make the transition from the more dependent type of learning associated with the Junior Certificate to the more independent learning environment associated with Senior Cycle.
It encourages personal and social development and recognises the need for students to grow in independence. Transition Year fosters academic achievement as students prepare for a Leaving Certificate programme, further study and adult and working life. It encourages the development of a wide range of transferable critical thinking and creative problem-solving skills.
- Having the TY Programme in a school opens up many opportunities to students which they cannot experience in other years. In Coláiste Muire we have 103 students (divided into 5 classes) pursuing the programme for 2021/22. We believe the programme enables students to mature, to develop confidence, to become independent thinkers, to make informed subject choices and to gain a valuable insight into broad variety of career areas.
- Transition Year classes comprise an equal amount of students from each of our third year classes 3A – 3F. Students have to move from the comfort zone of their former classes and make new friends in several different groupings. This is a challenge, but it is an essential part of the teamwork involved in many areas of TY.
- Transition Year students are regularly called on “to meet and greet”. They act as guides at our Open Night, at our 1st Year Entrance Assessment and during our Introduction to 2nd Level days. This year an Open Morning on Saturday 6th November replaced our usual Open Night. Through involvement in these events students further develop their confidence and their communication skills.
- We constantly strive to keep our programme interesting, innovative and a worthwhile experience for each of our students. Each TY subject plan is reviewed an evaluated annually. New subjects such as Chinese, Agricultural Science and Philosophy have been introduced in recent years. Last year we added Applied Maths and Coding to our TY curriculum. We constantly seek out new ‘additional activities’ to offer students. We are delighted with the opportunity to participate again in ‘FI in schools’ and ‘CanSat’. The ‘STEM Passport for Inclusion programme’ is a new additional activity for 2021/22. Our TY students recently achieved a Gaelbratach for Coláiste Muire. The Future Leaders programme is now in its third year. All TY students are invited to participate in the Gaisce Bronze award. This year TY students are competing again in Public Speaking – Soroptimist Ireland, the Concern Debates and TY Drama Festival.
- Coláiste Muire started working with the PDST in piloting an ePortfolio with all of our TY students for 2016/17. This is now well developed in the school and each student is working on their ePortfolio 2021/22.
- Our TY students have achieved success at national level in the following areas: National Mock Trial (PAL), Young Social Innovators, TY Drama Festival, CareersPortal National Career Skills Competition, Press Pass Student Journalism Awards, Euroscola in Strasbourg, BD STEM Stars and the Irish National History Competition. During school closures last year Coláiste Muire won each of the four Future Leaders Solo 2 Awards.
- Each year we review the Leaving Cert results and placements of students who pursued the Transition Year option. Our past TY students consistently rank among our high achievers. Furthermore there is greater variety among the courses being pursued by past TY students compared to those who transferred directly to Leaving Cert. Past TY students feature prominently at our annual Past Pupils Careers Fair.
Effective communication is a significant factor in planning, organising and leading a successful TY programme. Prospective TY students are briefed on all aspects of the programme at our 3rd year Information Night. In September all TY students and parents are invited to an Information Meeting where the philosophy of the programme is revisited and key dates for the coming year are highlighted. In May a TY Awards Night celebrates students ’efforts and achievements. Our Information Night and Awards Night were held virtually in 2020/21.
Academic reports are sent home in January and May. There is a separate TY Parent / Teacher meeting in the second term. All parents are asked to sign off weekly on their daughter’s TY Journal. We are happy to meet with parents at any stage if they have queries about the programme.
Our school continues to use Microsoft Office 365. TY News and the TY Calendar are updated / modified on a designated TY student hub. Each student must take responsibility for checking the hub daily and keeping themselves informed on all aspects of the programme. We use TEAMS for all classes and also for communicating with the TY cohort.
21 Years of experience
Coláiste Muire introduced the Transition Year option in September 2000. The programme has grown steadily until at present, approximately 80% of our students take this option. We invite two students to speak on their experience of TY at our 3rd Year Information Night. This year we have included a document entitled ‘A student’s experience of Transition Year‘ detailing current students’ experience of the programme. This can can be viewed on the TY home page.
Ms. O’Regan is the TY Co-ordinator. She is also the Class Director of TY 3. Ms Minogue, Mr. Hayes Ms. Hooke & Ms. Breen are the Class Directors of TY 1, TY2, TY4 & TY5. We have a core team comprising Ms. O’Regan, Ms.Howard, Ms.Harrold and Ms. E. Jones.