The first of a number of High Court actions over the calculated grades awarded for this year's Leaving Certificate is expected to be heard next month.
The lead case of 20 challenges is being taken by Belvedere College student Freddie Sherry, from Newtown, Celbridge, Co Kildare, who claims a decision to remove school historical records in the calculated grades process resulted in him being unfairly downgraded by 55 points in his Leaving Cert.
The court will have to deal with a number of issues before the case can be heard including a challenge by Mr Sherry to a claim of privilege by the Minister for Education over a memo prepared for Government about grade standardisation.
The court heard there may be further privilege claims over a limited number of documents. Those issues are expected to be dealt with later this month.
At the High Court today Mr Justice Charles Meenan told legal teams they should not lose sight of the fact that some 20 other challenges had been parked pending the outcome of the lead case.
He said he was anxious to fix a hearing date for the Sherry case as soon as possible and before the end of the law term in late December.
In his action, Mr Sherry claims a direction by the minister last August to remove school historical records in the calculated grades process resulted in him being unfairly downgraded by 55 points in his Leaving Cert.
He was "hugely disappointed" that his teachers' estimated CAO points total of 542 for him was reduced to 487 under the process.
His first course choice was pharmacy in Trinity College Dublin and he now faced the prospect of sitting the rescheduled Leaving Cert written exams later this month, he said.
He claims the minister's direction interfered in the calculated grades process overseen by an independent steering committee was "unlawful".
The minister and State deny the claims and maintain there is no reason to believe Mr Sherry would be in an improved position if historical school data was included.
They say students in Belvedere College received, on average, higher scores in 2020 compared to the 2017-19 period and there is no basis for any assertion that Mr Sherry would have been treated more favourably in another category of school.
Because the calculated grades process has been completed and CAO offers issued, any attempt to reinstate school historical data would be inappropriate or disproportionate as it would cast doubt on the results of significant numbers of students and their entitlement to college places, they argue.