Please check out link above for latest report on school retention figures launched recently by the Minister for Education and Skills; the following are the main observations in the report:
- Drop-out rates at secondary level have hit a new low with nine out of 10 students on average making it through to the Leaving Certificate.
- The latest school retention report shows that 90.6 per cent of students who entered secondary schools in 2008 have since completed the Leaving Cert. This compares to 90.1 per cent for the previous year’s cohort of entrants, and just 83.6 per cent for the 1998 cohort, who would have done their Leaving Cert year a decade ago.
- The report shows the retention rate for boys continues to improve. The gender gap for those students entering secondary school in 2008 was 2.67 per cent, compared to 3.59 per cent the previous year. For the 2008 cohort, 91.93 per cent of girls completed the Leaving Cert compared to 89.26 per cent of boys.
- The average retention rate for DEIS schools, namely those in disadvantaged areas, continues to rise, standing at 82.1 per cent for the 2008 cohort. By comparison the completion rate for the 2001 group was 68.2 per cent.
- There are also regional variations with the lowest retention rates in Longford (88.87 per cent),Waterford city (88.68 per cent), Dublin city (88.58 per cent), south Dublin (88.48 per cent), Galway city (87.51 per cent), Limerick city (86.96 per cent), and Carlow (86.03 per cent).
- The highest retention rate of 93.7 per cent was in Limerick county.
- Across Europe the average number of adults aged 20-24 who have completed secondary education is 81 per cent. We are significantly ahead of that figure and have the eighth highest secondary school completion rate across the 28 member states.
- However, despite the positives in this report it is still a concern that approximately one in 10 students are not completing secondary school. Many of these students are choosing other educational and training pathways such as apprenticeships and Youthreach courses, but there are a proportion of students who are leaving school without any plan.