Education (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2015

IrelandText of the new act is now available here – it was signed into law one week ago (5 May), though it is not yet in force. The main effect is that a qualifying education provider may apply to the Minister for Education for an authorisation to describe itself as a “university” for certain limited purposes outside the state. In fact, there is only one education provider that currently qualifies, and that is the RCSI. Conditions may be attached to an authorisation, and there is provision for review and withdrawal of the authorisation.

With the new act in force, the following are the only Irish educational establishments or facilities permitted to describe themselves as a “university”:

  1. The seven universities,
  2. An educational institution or facility established and described as a “university” before 30 July 1996 (which presumably includes the National University of Ireland, the Pontifical University St Patrick’s College Maynooth, and the Open University),
  3. An education provider acting within the terms of an authorisation granted under the Act, and so describing itself only outside Ireland, and
  4. Anyone who has the Minister’s approval so to describe themselves.

Presumably the new legislation on technological universities will also permit those institutions to refer to themselves as universities.

There are some additional provisions in the new act, one of which entitles the Minister to withhold data which might be used to build up a competitive league table relating to schools.

Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply