‘Positive discrimination’ fears surround women-only academic posts

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on January 21st, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Concerns were raised that 45 new academic women-only posts could be seen as ‘positive discrimination’ in correspondence between government departments. The Department of Education had been seeking advice about the legality of creating professorship posts that would be open just to women …” (more)

[Ken Foxe, Irish Times, 21 January]

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Minister of State Mitchell O’Connor welcomes record number of enrolments in Higher Education Institutions in 2017

Posted in Governance and administration, Research on January 18th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor has welcomed today’s release of key statistics from the Higher Education Sector in ‘Higher Education: Key Facts and Figures’ by the Higher Education Authority (HEA). Student numbers in the sector have increased from 196,000 in 2011/12 to almost 232,000 in 2017/18, an increase of some 18% …” (more, download)

[Department of Education and Skills, 18 January]

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Research shows some increase in number of students taking higher level subjects

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on January 17th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD announced today that the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) has published research on the early impacts of the revised grading scheme for Leaving Certificate examinations which was introduced in June 2017 …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 17 January]

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Ministers McHugh and Halligan announce competitive call for Springboard+ 2019

Posted in Governance and administration on January 14th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Focus on skills for the workplace of the future. The Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD together with the Minister of State at the Department of Education and Skills, John Halligan TD today issued a competitive call to all higher education providers for course proposals which will be funded under Springboard+ 2019 …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 14 January]

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Minister Mitchell O’Connor appoints mediator for the English Language Education Sector

Posted in Governance and administration on January 13th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The Minister for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, has today appointed the former General Secretary of the Association of Secondary Teachers of Ireland (ASTI), Mr Patrick King, to work with relevant stakeholders to explore the potential to address some of the employment related issues that have arisen in the English language education sector …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 13 January]

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Gaps remain in educational outcomes of students from disadvantaged backgrounds, study finds

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on January 7th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Significant gaps remain between educational outcomes of students in disadvantaged second-level schools and others despite the success of targeted Government investment. A new analysis of the impact of the Department of Education’s DEIS (Delivering Equality of Opportunity in Schools) programme shows that low family income has become more of a factor in a student’s achievement rather than reducing in significance …” (more)

[Niall Murray, Irish Examiner, 7 January]

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Minister Mitchell O’Connor announces €1.65m in funding for innovative Teaching and Learning projects in the higher education sector

Posted in Teaching on December 19th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor, TD, Minister of State with special responsibility for Higher Education, today (19 December 2018) announced funding of €1.65m for 16 innovative projects to enhance teaching and learning in the higher education institutions …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 19 December]

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Unions concerned by plan to give business bigger say in university funding

Posted in Governance and administration on December 17th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Trade unions are seeking an urgent meeting with the Minister for Education to raise ‘grave concerns’ over plans to give big business a greater say in where hundreds of millions of euro in university investment will be spent. It follows an Irish Times report which said a new ‘oversight arrangement’ is to be established which will facilitate employers having a greater say in the strategic direction of €300 million in education spending …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 17 December]

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‘We’re unmotivated at placement’ – college to meet regulator over pharmacy students’ mental health fears

Posted in Teaching on December 17th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Officials at University College Cork are to meet with the pharmacy regulator amid concern about mental health issues and a lack of motivation among young pharmacists coming in to the industry. It comes as part of a remarkable row between the Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland and students coming into the industry …” (more)

[Wayne O’Connor, Independent, 16 December]

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UL pledges to pay executives’ €1.2m pensions from private funding

Posted in Governance and administration on December 10th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“University of Limerick has insisted taxpayers’ money will not be used to fund moving two executives from a subsidiary company to its own State-funded pension scheme at a cost of more than €1 million …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 10 December]

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Staff unpaid as fears rise over college’s fate

Posted in Governance and administration on December 3rd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Up to 28 staff at a language school have not been paid amid fears it has closed down. The union representing some of the teachers at Grafton College in Portobello, Dublin appealed to the Department of Education to step in and ‘not to wash its hands of this’ just weeks before Christmas …” (more)

[Laura Lynott, Independent, 3 December]

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Department of Education pays €24m for DIT building on Cathal Brugha Street

Posted in Governance and administration on November 28th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The long-running campaign to sell off the Dublin Institute of Technology catering college buildings just off Dublin’s O’Connell Street has finally been completed with the disposal of extensive buildings to the Department of Education and Skills for about €24 million. The property sale is expected to open the way for a planned 1,000-pupil post-primary school for students from the Drumcondra, Marino and Dublin 1 areas …” (more)

[Jack Fagan, Irish Times, 28 November]

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Higher Education Authority seeks new laws to clarify its independence

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on November 23rd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The State regulatory body for higher education is seeking new laws which would clarify its independence from the Department of Education. There was controversy earlier this year when the Higher Education Authority’s (HEA) chief executive Dr Graham Love resigned amid frustration over what sources described as ‘micro-managing’ by the department …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 23 November]

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Minister Mitchell O’Connor opens the consultation forum on the legislative reform of the Higher Education Authority Act

Posted in Governance and administration on November 23rd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Minister for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor, TD, today (23rd of November), opened the consultation forum on the new Higher Education Authority Act. The Higher Education Authority (HEA) is the statutory funding authority for the universities, institutes of technology and a number of other designated institutions, and is the advisory body to the Minister for Education and Skills in relation to the higher education sector …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 23 November]

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National Student Accommodation Strategy

Posted in Governance and administration on November 22nd, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD and the Minister of State with special responsibility for Housing and Urban Development, Damien English TD today released the end Q3 2018 progress report on the National Student Accommodation Strategy …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 21 November]

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An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, TD and Minister Mitchell O’Connor launch Gender Equality Action Plan for Higher Education Institutions 2018-2020 and announce the Government of Ireland Senior Academic Talent Initiative

Posted in Governance and administration on November 12th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, TD, and Mary Mitchell O’Connor, Minister of State with special responsibility for Higher Education today (12th Nov 2018) will launch the Gender Action Plan 2018 – 2020: Accelerating Gender Equality in Irish Higher Education Institutions. The Action Plan is designed to transform the Higher Education sector’s gender equality performance …” (more, download)

[Department of Education and Skills, 12 November]

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Higher education chair urged chief to change his mind on resignation

Posted in Governance and administration on November 10th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The chair of the Higher Education Authority tried to convince its chief executive to reverse his decision to resign over issues such as the risks posed to colleges from underfunding, new records show. Dr Graham Love announced his resignation from the regulatory body for the third-level sector last August, a year and a half after taking up the role …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 10 November]

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Third-Sector May Be Insulated From Worst Of Brexit

Posted in Governance and administration on November 7th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The Department of Education and Skills (DES) are collaborating with the Higher Education Authority (HEA), to prepare for consequences of both a ‘negotiated exit’ and ‘no deal’ Brexit on their institutions. The EU has stated as past of the Withdrawal Agreement, that the UK and Ireland could agree to maintain their current higher education relationship under the Common Travel Area (CTA) …” (more)

[College Tribune, 7 November]

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Ministers announce significant changes to process of Leaving Certificate examination appeals and entry to higher education

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on November 1st, 2018 by steve

Ireland“Minister for Education and Skills, Joe McHugh TD, and Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, have today (1st November 2018) announced significant changes to the Leaving Certificate examination appeals process from 2019. The changes will mean that, in future, students who appeal the results of the Leaving Certificate will be informed by the State Examinations Commission (SEC) of the outcome of their appeals much earlier than has previously been possible …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 1 November]

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UL president hopes that ‘very grave matters are dealt with fully and finally’

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on October 30th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“The University of Limerick has ‘a sharp focus’ on ensuring ‘very grave matters are dealt with fully and finally’ at the university, the UL president has told staff. In a letter to staff this Tuesday morning, Dr Des Fitzgerald updated his UL colleagues on changes made at the university, ahead of the publication of a special report carried out by the Comptroller and Auditor General …” (more)

[Jess Casey, Limerick Leader, 30 October]

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