Leaving Cert: ‘When the exams are done, I’m going to throw my books away. I might even burn them’

Dublin pupil Iustina Loghin is looking forward to a summer of travel

I am so glad that the first few days of exams are over. I’ve had four exams since Wednesday and, I won’t lie, I am tired.

This weekend, I plan to relax and get some extra sleep, and maybe take a trip to the cinema with my sister, but I will of course still have to do some study. Maths paper two doesn’t care if we’re tired, or just want to get outside and enjoy the sun.

Ah, the sun. Is that real? I hear about the sun and I glimpse it through the window, but I’m inside studying, so maybe it’s best to pretend it is just an imaginary yellow ball.

I have five more exams to go, and it feels like a long way away.


That said, most of the exams so far have been okay. I thought the English papers were quite easy, and I wrote 15 pages for the first exam and about 17 for the second.

It helped that I really enjoyed our novel, Room by Emma Donoghue, which is about a young woman held captive.

I didn’t like today’s geography paper. I found parts of it were really hard.

Maths paper two more than made up for it, however. It was so easy and I knew everything on it. During the break between today’s morning and afternoon exams, I was in the canteen with some classmates and we wrote out some maths questions on the board. They asked me to explain simultaneous equations, which I did – and then they came up on the paper. Delightful.

But I may have been in a minority on the maths paper today, as most of my classmates found it hard.

I’m not looking forward to sitting the biology paper next week, although I am looking forward to getting it over and done with.

I came to Ireland from Romania in 2018, and Romanian and French – both are Romance languages – are my strongest subjects. I am hoping they will help get me where I want, which is to study accounting and finance at the National College of Ireland.

When the exams are done, I am going to immediately throw my books away. I might even burn them if I can do so safely. I won’t be needing them any more.

Then, for the summer, I am going to travel: two weeks in Romania, a trip to England, and also a visit to Portugal. Yes, it’s a lot of travel, but after the stress of the Leaving Cert, I deserve it.

Iustina Loghin is a Leaving Cert student at Clogher Road Community College, Drimnagh, Dublin