High School Study Abroad Programs in Monaghan & Cavan Ireland

High School Study Abroad Immersion Programs in IrelandHaving the opportunity to experience a unique culture that is vastly different from one’s own broadens one’s horizons, and the Irish culture is one of the oldest and most distinctive in the world. It also has a secondary school system that is challenging, diverse, and definitely gives a high school student a competitive edge no matter what it is that they end up pursuing as a career path.

Living and studying abroad for a semester, an entire academic year or more can be a life changing and revelatory experience for a young person. If you are considering a study abroad program for your son or daughter, Ireland could be the perfect choice and the high school study abroad programs in Monaghan and Cavan presented in this article can make it happen. Nacel International (http://www.nacel.org/high-school-programs/private-high-school-in-monaghan-and-cavan), who is the provider of this exchange program, has a well-established working relationships with two of the most prestigious secondary schools in the country, and they take care of all of the logistics.


high-school-study-abroad-immersion-programs-in-ireland-2Secondary school in the Republic of Ireland is uniquely structured, and is geared toward making the learning process more and more independent as a student approached graduation. Additionally, there are different options for young people who want to pursue academics, others who plan on being business owners, and those who want vocational training respectively.

Secondary Education

In Ireland, the term “secondary education” refers to those years of schooling that starts when a youngster is in the 7th year of school and normally 12 years old, and continues until the final year of high school. Furthermore, Irish secondary schooling is divided into three distinct cycles; the Junior cycle, the transition year, and the senior cycle.

The Junior Cycle

high-school-study-abroad-immersion-programs-in-ireland-3The Junior Cycle consists of the first year following the completion of primary school, the second year, and the third year. At the end of their third year, Irish students take the Junior Certificate examination which covers the eight broad areas of study (Mathematical Studies, Science and Technology, Social, Political and Environmental Education, Arts Education, Physical Education, Religious and Moral Education, and Guidance, Counseling, Pastoral Care). This exam takes place in June, and students begin to study in earnest around February by taking mock exams and practicing with exams from previous years.

The Transition Year is carefully designed to help Irish youth make the transition from the guided and directed schooling of the Junior Cycle years to the more independent learning style that characterizes the final Senior Cycle.

The Senior Cycle

high-school-study-abroad-exchange-programs-in-ireland-4The Senior Cycle consists of the final two years in Irish secondary school, and there are three different paths that students may choose to follow at this stage. Those students who plan on continuing on an academic path in higher education work towards taking the Leaving Certificate examination. This exam tests knowledge on the 6 to 8 subjects (from a list of officially sanctioned subjects) that a student has focused on. Other students finish their secondary school education through the Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme where they take 6 or 7 academic subjects and also complete two modules, “Preparation for the World of Work” and “Enterprise Education”.

Lastly, the Leaving Certificate Applied program provides a graduation path for students that desire more practical knowledge that will enable them to more easily integrate into the workforce. This program consists of three main elements: General Education, Vocational Education, and Vocational Preparation.


high-school-study-abroad-exchange-programs-in-ireland-5Nacel International works together with two different Colleges in order to offer foreign exchange students an opportunity to complete a portion or even all of their high school education in Ireland.

Monaghan Collegiate School is a secondary school with an extremely rich history, having been established in 1570. With only 240 students, this college provides an optimal scholastic environment with small classes in an idyllic setting. Monaghan Collegiate is one of only 28 secondary schools in the Republic of Ireland that are under the auspices of the Protestant Church. Nonetheless, the student body is made up of pupils of various faiths and backgrounds.

The high school’s facilities are state of the art, and include a Information and Communications Technology resource center, an Architectural Technology and Engineering Suite, fully equipped lecture rooms and class rooms, a first aid station, new sports facilities, and new administrative offices.

The other college they are partnered with in Cavan is a Christian co-educational day and boarding school that also dates back centuries (established in 1611). Arrangements with other private boarding schools in Ireland can be done upon special request. Nacel’s high school programs in Monaghan and Cavan Ireland are available for students between 13 and 18 years of age.