The Transition Year Programme is a broad one, intended to develop as many talents as possible in both academic subjects and practical activities. It attempts to combine academic and experiential learning without the pressures of a state exam. It is a one year programme which follows completion of the Junior Certificate.
It also allows students to review their Junior Certificate results, and think about possible careers for an extra year before choosing their Leaving Certificate optional subjects. It is an optional year, subject to demand and dependent on available resources. The Board of Management decides on the maximum number of students that can be accepted into the programme in any given year. No student is automatically guaranteed a place in the programme. Applications are made on a standard form in March of 3rd Year. In the event that there are more applications than places available then places will be allocated via consultation with teachers and a lottery.
Transition Year students go on a considerable number of outings, so as to learn by doing as well as by academic study. In addition, several courses are provided which are not within the normal school curriculum to introduce students to as many skills as possible. A fee of €600 (for the programme beginning in September 2019; subject to change in future years) is charged.
There is no set syllabus for Transition Year, so the subjects and courses can vary depending on teacher availability and choice.
Parents of Third Year students are invited to a Leaving Certificate Options Night in February each year to help them understand the options that exist after Junior Certificate. The students of Transition Year put on an Open Night each year to demonstrate what they are studying and learning in the Transition Year Programme. This usually takes place in early May.