This is an unfair statement. It only takes into account the points achieved by a particular student alone and neglects to consider other circumstances. Everyone has the right to go to college. These incentives should be used to help students get to Third Level as opposed to simply aiding those who achieved 600 points. It could be used to encourage people from a financially disadvantaged background to carry on to Third Level. It's clear that this money could be put to better use. There should be a compromise that takes into account how well a student does in the Leaving Cert under their financial circumstances as opposed to just how well they do.
How can you also justify giving financial aid to students whose parents would be classed as high income earners? Even before going into the Leaving Cert many of these students have an advantage as their parents can pay for extra tuition. “Money can’t buy brains” may be an argument against this point, but in fairness, it’s a weak one. If you have two students, both roughly of equal intellect, but from extremely different financial backgrounds, then obviously the disadvantaged student has a less chance of doing as well in the exams as the other student. According to the HEAR website; “evidence shows that long term poverty and employment can have a negative effect on how well a student does at school and whether or not they go to college”. This HEAR scheme and the maintenance grant lift the burden on many college students and their families. It helps to encourage all students from every background to carry on with their education to Third Level and I believe that this is why there shouldn't be financial incentives based on Leaving Cert alone.
With the recession segregating more and more people in this country, there is an even greater need for fairness in the CAO system and any other entry routes to college. Education during a time like this is essential for the improvement of the economy. It is an educated workforce that will stand to this country during the recovery years. This means that financial incentives shouldn't be offered to those alone who do well in the Leaving Cert. Due to the high unemployment rate of 14.6% across Ireland, many families would be unable to afford the cost of college. This immediately reduces a significant number of people going to college which will ultimately have a negative effect on the economy in years to come. If this money was used to encourage those who deserve to go to college but unable to afford it, then Ireland would build an even greater workforce. This is especially important when you consider the high number of educated, young people already leaving the country. “Exports” are high in Ireland; the young, educated people being the product most exported. The figures from last April alone show that 87,000 people emigrated from Ireland. This only puts more emphasis on the need for equality in the education system. Paying high achievers just isn't the way.