Leaving Certificate Physical Education

Development of a new specification for Leaving Certificate Physical Education has commenced.

NCCA advises the Minister for Education on curriculum and assessment for early childhood education, for primary and post-primary schools. As part of the broader redevelopment of senior cycle, it is envisaged that a revised specification for Leaving Certificate Physical Education (PE) will be introduced in schools from September 2026. The Development Group for Leaving Certificate PE will have a key role in this work. The group includes nominees of the education partners and other key education agencies.

Below you will find information on the development work including the brief for the review for this subject, and a note from each of the development group meetings.

The first step in the redevelopment of Leaving Certificate Physical Education was the development of a Brief for the review of the subject. 


The development group for Leaving Certificate Physical Education was convened on 27th February 2024 and will progress the development of a new specification guided by the brief and the findings of the Early Enactment Review. 

Meeting 1: 27th February 2024

Meeting 2: 9th April 2024

An early enactment review was scheduled to be undertaken by NCCA when the first cohort of students had completed the course but this plan was suspended in March 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. It was not possible to commence the review until the 2022 - 2023 school year, when students had completed the curriculum and assessment arrangements as set out in the curriculum specification.
This early enactment review of LCPE was completed in 2023 to gather feedback and explore:

  • how the curriculum is being enacted and how it could be improved
  • the student experience of learning and assessment
  • how teachers are working with the curriculum.

The report on the early enactment review presents an overview of the consultation conducted as part of the review, followed by a summary of the findings. Based on the findings from the review, the report concludes with key insights and recommendations for modifications to the specification.

Reader’s note:

This report was approved by the Council in May 2023. It contains recommended responses to the findings of the review, which are outlined in tables 3 and 4 (pages 14 and 15). The recommendations in Table 3 were for immediate implementation, while Table 4 outlines recommendations for consideration by the Leaving Certificate PE Development Group.

Due to the acceleration of the redevelopment of senior cycle, announced by the Minister for Education in September 2023, the Leaving Certificate PE commenced its work in February 2024 alongside the other Tranche 2 subjects. This approach ensures that the updating of the curriculum will be aligned to the broader redevelopment of senior cycle.

The recommendation in Table 3 to remove Personal Exercise and Fitness as an option for the Performance Assessment will now be considered by the Development Group as part of its broader considerations. The recommendations in Table 4 will be considered in light of the broader redevelopment in senior cycle including the parameters for the design of Additional Assessment Components in the development of specifications for all Tranche 2 subjects.

The updated LC PE curriculum will be introduced in schools in September 2026.