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Transition Year

Transition Year (TY) is an optional one-year programme that forms the first year of senior cycle. It is designed to act as a bridge between the Junior Cycle and Leaving Certificate programmes. Students explore careers, hobbies, talents and strengths while allowing them the opportunity to strengthen their friendships, both old and new.

Our Transition Year students take part in many cultural trips and workshops, while also gaining experience in the world of work. Trips and workshops can vary year to year but the favourites always remain (The Avon, Kylemore Karting and Zipit). It is also a year to get in touch with nature with hikes, gardening and litter-picking. TY allows students to try new things and to get more involved with school life and extra curricular activities. The Gaisce, President’s Award has been very popular amongst students who have strong leadership, intrapersonal and community skills. Students who do TY tend to achieve more points in their Leaving Certificate examinations compared to their equally-abled peers. The transition year allows students to sample a wide variety of subjects that they have never tried before. Often students choose a new leaving certificate subject after partaking in it during Transition Year. We also run an LCA day to give students the opportunity to sample some LCA modules and key assignments. This helps them to make better choices when it comes to their Leaving Certificate programme and leads to more satisfaction and success in their final year. It is evident that Transition Year is not only a very pleasurable and informative year, participation in the programme improves students’ academic success and overall wellbeing.

TY Subjects

  • Gaeilge/Celtic Studies
  • English
  • Maths
  • Science
  • Engineering
  • Art
  • Technical Graphics
  • Dance
  • Physical Education
  • Community Care
  • Education for Living
  • French
  • Home Economics
  • Woodwork
  • Geography
  • History
  • Finance

Also on the curriculum

  • Work Experience (2 weeks x 2).
  • Gaisce – President’s Award (optional).
  • Self-defense.
  • Cú Chulainn Heart – Social Enterprise competition sponsored by Dundrum Shopping Centre.
  • School Bank with Bank of Ireland.

Examples of Cultural Trips

  • The Avon Adventure Centre, Blessington
  • Kylemore Karting
  • Zipit Forest Adventures
  • Dublinia
  • The National Museum of Ireland
  • Wicklow Gaol
  • Kilmainham Gaol
  • The TY Expo
  • The Laughter Lounge (comedy gig)
  • Christmas Pantomime
  • Plays (French/English)
  • IFI cinema
  • Windmill Lane Recording Studios
  • Hiking (Glendalough, Crone Woods/Djouce, Hellfire Club, Tibradden/Fairy Castle/Ticknock)
  • Others


  • Academic exams at Christmas and Summer.
  • October and Easter Assessments (can be formal/informal).
  • Class projects.
  • Cross-curricular projects.
  • TY Portfolio & Interview.

Overall TY Grade

Transition Year students are given an overall Transition Year Grade. This assesses their level of commitment and involvement throughout the year. It is marked differently for Irish-based students and exchange students.

Irish based students are given 34% for their TY Portfolio & Interview, 33% for their attendance and 33% for their work experience.

Exchange students are marked similarly however, they are marked also on their efforts to learn English and integrate with other cultures. It’s important for us that the groups are cohesive and inclusive, while also recognising that parents/guardians of exchange students have sent them here to improve their English, do well academically and to mature. Therefore, exchange students get 25% for English & Integration, 25% for their TY Portfolio & Interview, 25% for their attendance and 25% for their work experience.

TY Portfolio & Interview – Students must document their TY personal development journey and encapsulate it in a slideshow that they must present to the Programme Coordinator at the end of the year. They must also present a portfolio of work which showcases one piece of work from each subject. An interview will follow this presentation. The Portfolio & interview are worth 33% to Irish-based students and 25% to exchange students.

Please note: Students with an attendance score of 65% or less are not eligible to pass Transition Year.

Student of the Year

The Student of the Year is chosen by the Programme Coordinator based off the end-of-year interview. Students who participate in extra curricular activities, who are kind to others and who exude leadership have the best chance of winning this award.