Pandemic has set DEIS schools back by two years – O’Connor

Remote learning and frequent Covid-related absences has had a “huge impact” on disadvantaged pupils, according to the principal of a DEIS school.

Data from the Irish Times, shows the number of pupils progressing from DEIS schools to third level is down slightly to 62%.

The progression rates in fee-paying schools was 99% while 80% of students in non-fee paying schools went on to third level.

Principal of Ramsgrange Community School in Co Wexford Rachel O’Connor says the pandemic has been damaging.

“I’m here as a principal in a DEIS school for nearly a decade now and I can see the really incredible work that’s been done here.

“But a lot of that work has been undone in the last two years.

“There’s a cyclical lack of attendance, familiar reasons for nonattendance, those barriers that we broke down have been given the right to just run riot again.

“We’re going to have to start from stage one again.”

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