Leaving Cert students ‘relatively pleased’ with English paper one The first exams in this year’s Leaving and Junior Certs have finished. For the first time since 2019, 131,000 students are sitting the tests in the traditional format. Students will be “relatively pleased” with this year’s Leaving Cert English paper one, Studyclix subject expert Jamie Dockery, an English and History teacher at Tyndall College in Co Carlow, has said. He said: “Students will be relatively pleased with the Higher Level Paper 1 English exam which, under the theme of “Powerful Voices” offered them the opportunity to explore and discuss the significance of poetry, music and books. Overall, it was a fair exam with plenty of choice and stimulating material for the stronger candidates in particular to sink their teeth into. Call for more action on fuel taxes as pump prices soar Sligo-Leitrim independent TD, Marc MacSharry has called on the Government to take more actions on fuel taxes amid reports of stations charging over €2 per litre. The former Fianna Fáil politician said levies and taxes on fuel should be eliminated or substantially reduced on a temporary basis. Mr MacSharry’s comments come after the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (Simi) issued advice to motorists to unnecessary trips and remove heavy items from the car to save fuel. Fuel prices across the State have soared over €2 per litre, while petrol has overtaken diesel as the most expensive fuel. Plans to act unilaterally over protocol would mark ‘historic low point’, says Taoiseach Taoiseach Micheál Martin has said Britain’s plans to act unilaterally over the Northern Ireland Protocol would be “deeply damaging” and mark a “historic low point”. Addressing the European Parliament, Mr Martin said the UK government’s proposed legislation to override key parts of the Brexit deal would be “to the benefit of absolutely no-one”. The Taoiseach also said during his visit to Strasbourg that he disagrees with the UK government’s handling of the protocol and accused it of failing to engage with the EU. His comments come amid a stand-off between the UK and the EU over the protocol, an agreement designed to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland but which instead created fresh checks on trade between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Public encouraged to avail of remote working hubs Working from home can lead to your professional activities invading your home life, according to Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys, who is encouraging the use of remote working hubs under an initiative offering 10,000 new free hot desk sessions. Minister Humphreys said her main aim in announcing the initiative is to increase registered users on the connectedhubs.ie website. As it stands the website has 1,800 registered users in about 240 hubs nationally. In an interview on the RTÉ News at One Minister Humphreys described Covid as having been a “game changer” for remote working. “What I want to do is I want more people to take up the use of the remote working hubs. We have been investing in remote working hubs right across the country.And I think it is a better quality of life for people who can live and work in their own communities.