What is Transition Year?
A one year programme taken after the Junior Certificate and before the Leaving Certificate Programme.
Transition Year places a heavy emphasis on learning from experience. The emphasis is on developing skills rather than on simply remembering facts. Such skills stand to people for life.
What’s the purpose of the Transition Year Programme?
To promote maturity. Maturity in studies by making students more self-directed learners through the development of general, technical and academic skills. Maturity in relation to work and careers by developing work-related skills. Personal Maturity by providing opportunities to develop communication skills, self-confidence and a sense of responsibility. Social Maturity by developing greater ‘people’ skills and more awareness of the world outside school.
What about exams?
Assessment is a key part of any worthwhile learning programme. Transition Year is an opportunity to move beyond the narrow focus of end-of-year, written exams. The emphasis is on varied and on-going assessment with students themselves becoming involved in diagnosing their own learning strengths and weaknesses. Project work, portfolio work and exhibitions of students’ work are also encouraged.
Who decides on the Transition Year Programme?
Each school devises its own TY programme. The teaching staff draws up a programme in the light of the Transition Year Guidelines and the Resource Material published by the Department of Education and Science. They also consider students’ needs, parents’ views, employers and the wider interests of the local community. Each year the programme is evaluated, with inputs from all these parties, and revised by the teaching staff.
What subjects are studied?
Here in Killarney Community College we offer a wide range of subjects. These include the following: English, Music, Maths, Information Technology, Irish, Spanish, Business/Enterprise, French, Home Economics, Science, Religion, SPHE, History, Geography, Career Guidance, Art, Metalwork, Woodwork
Modules that may be offered to Transition Year students:
Gaisce Bronze Presidents Award.
First Aid Certification.
Law Programme Certification with Barrister Niamh Cronin.
Public Speaking with Mr. Alan Devine (Professional Actor).
Young Social Innovators Programme (YSI).
Mini Company Programme.
Blackwater Outdoor Activities (zip lining, high ropes, tubing).
Driver Education Programme.
Business in the Community Programme.
Work Experience (2 weeks)
Visit to Radio Kerry.
Trip to Dublin (Musical).
Volunteering with various charities: Visiting the Elderly at St. Columbanus, AWARE bag packing, Oesophageal cancer Lollipop Day to name a few.
Throughout the year many more activities and events take place.
Benefits of Transition Year
- Most programmes work towards getting a balance between some continuation of essential core subjects, a tasting and sampling of other subjects, a variety of distinctive courses designed to broaden students’ horizons and some modules and activities specifically aimed at promoting the maturity that is central to the whole Transition Year ideal.
- A ‘work experience’ placement of two weeks, allowing students to sample a workplace environment at first hand, has been a major milestone on many young peoples’ path to maturity.
- Students can develop more independent study habits. Project work, for example, can promote self-regulated learning. Rather than have students lose any study habits, Transition Year can lay a solid base for learning in a more adult, responsible way.
- The year lays a solid foundation for a Leaving Certificate Programme. At the end of a Transition Year Programme these young people can be better equipped, better motivated and more clearly focused than their counterparts who did not have the benefit of the year.
- Students can follow and develop special interests. These might be sporting, leisure, academic or social interests. The flexibility offered by Transition Year means it can be an ideal opportunity for teenagers to respond to challenges such as Gaisce (The President’s award).
- Transition Year gets students and teachers out of the classroom. Trips to galleries, workplaces and other stimulating locations feature in our programme as the key benefit of the year.
- Students can learn the skills of dealing with people in practical ways. Oral communication skills are highlighted. Many teachers identify the growth of students’ confidence and self-esteem through the Transition Year programme as the key benefit of the year.
- Transition Year can encourage more mature relationships between parents and their children. Many parents remark that they have been changed through their child’s experiences of the Transition Year