FAQs - 6th Year

6th Year

6th year is a very busy year academically and students can feel under pressure for much of the year as the focus of all work is on the Leaving Certificate examination. You can best support your daughter by ensuring her academic work is balanced with good habits regarding sleeping, eating and exercising. Any concerns about workload and study should be addressed as early as possible. You can make arrangements to talk to your daughter’s teachers at any time by contacting the school.

One of the big events during 6th year is the celebration of 18th birthdays.  Understandably, these are big occasions for the girls, however weekends are a valuable and necessary study time and attending several parties during the academic term can distract from study. This is something which you should discuss with your daughter early in the school year and you should agree a plan with your daughter as to how to approach this issue.

The choice of college courses can also be a difficult time for students.  There is a huge range of courses available and you should take time to investigate the most suitable for your daughter.  Remember it is your daughter’s time to attend college and she should be following her interests and strengths and not your preference for where or what she should study.

Are there new books to purchase for 6th year?

No. However, you will be required to purchase exam papers. These are usually not purchased until September to ensure the most recent exam paper is included.

Is there a change in uniform for 6th year?

Yes. The school jumper for 6th year is a navy jumper. Students appointed as prefects wear a navy jumper with a yellow stripe on the collar. Socks also change to navy.

Does assembly day change in 6th year?

Assemblies for 5th years are held with 6th years and students will be advised of the day.  Students must attend assembly on their assigned day.  Assembly begins at 8.30am.

Will my daughter be able to avail of after school study time?

The 6th year students wishing to avail of the places in after school study are given preference.  There are 60 places available. There is a charge for this after school study. Your daughter will receive a form at the beginning of the school year to apply for a place in after school study.

How does my daughter change from higher to ordinary level?

There is a school policy in relation to changing levels. Click here to view it.

Can my daughter attend college open days?

Most colleges arrange open days on Saturday to facilitate parents and students to attend together. In 6th year all students attend the Higher Options exhibition where all the 3rd level colleges come together in the RDS to market their college and answer questions from students. This event is organised by the Irish Times and takes place in mid-September. The school does not organise trips to college open days.

When does my daughter need to choose her college courses?

The Central Applications Office (CAO) manage the applications to third level colleges in Ireland.  Your daughter will need to register with the CAO and receive a unique ID number.  Your daughter will be informed of the CAO process at her weekly careers guidance class.  Registration usually opens in October for Leaving Certificate students of the following June. Applications close in late January/early February to be processed and then open again in late May for any students wishing to change their mind. Visit for further details.

Students wishing to study abroad should discuss this with the careers guidance teacher as application processes vary in other countries.

When does school end for 6th years?

School ends for 6th years prior to the start of the State exams.  The final date is given on the school calendar

When does the Leaving Certificate begin?

The Leaving Certificate examinations begin on the Wednesday following the June bank holiday. The exam timetable is posted on the State Examinations Commission’s website,  The girls will also be given a copy of the timetable in school before the end of the year.

Is there a charge for sitting the Leaving Certificate?

Yes. The State Examinations Commission sets a fee for sitting the Leaving Certificate. In 2017, this fee was €116. In March of sixth year your daughter will receive a special form requesting this payment.

Does my daughter have to wear her uniform for the exams?

Yes. All Leaving Certificate exams are taken in school and uniform must be worn.

What if my daughter is studying an additional subject outside of school?

Santa Sabina will make arrangements for your daughter to sit this exam in school.

What is involved in 6th year graduation? And when is it?

6th year graduation takes place in school. The date will be included on the school calendar.  This is a big event for the students as it is their last goodbye to the school and their own school days. There is a special assembly of the whole school on this last day of school and various events throughout the day organised by the students themselves. Parents are invited to a graduation mass for their daughters on the evening of the graduation day. This is followed by refreshments in the school.

When is the “Debs” night?

The “Debs” committee organise this night which will be held in early September after the Leaving Certificate.  The Debs committee was elected from amongst the students in their last term of 5th year.  This committee arranges all aspects of the Debs night and by the beginning of 6th year the date and venue will be decided.  Students pay for debs (and 6th year graduation) in instalments from early in 6th year.


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