It’s Been a Busy Week for Third-Level. But Momentum Is at a Premium

Posted in Governance and administration on July 22nd, 2019 by steve

Ireland“It’s been an unusually busy news week for the higher education sector. On Wednesday morning, higher education’s biggest names assembled in the basement of the Alex Hotel to listen to Fianna Fáil leader Micheal Martin discuss the future of higher education. The speech was well received by university heads, with Brian MacCraith, the Chair of the Irish Universities Association, even describing his remarks as ‘brave’ …” (more)

[University Times, 21 July]

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Loan Schemes May Be Third-Level’s Best – and Most Equitable – Option

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on July 18th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Fianna Fáil leader Micheal Martin made headlines yesterday morning when, at a prominent higher education funding conference, he confessed that, if in government, Fianna Fáil would not abolish student fees, and would consider the introduction of student loans. This bombshell, contained within an otherwise lengthy and relatively uncontroversial speech, is likely to provoke cries of derision from across the political spectrum …” (more)

[Jack Synnott, University Times, 18 July]

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SIPTU says proposed reform legislation cannot ignore funding crisis in education

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on July 18th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“SIPTU representatives have today (Wednesday, 17th July) said that any proposed legislation to introduce greater regulation and reform to the governance of higher education cannot be used to divert attention away from the growing funding crisis facing the sector …” (more)

[SIPTU, 17 July]

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Government Hits Back at Fianna Fáil Higher Education Plan

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

Ireland“The government has hit back at Micheál Martin’s proposal to create a new government department for higher education and research, questioning the feasibility of a plan mooted by the Fianna Fáíl leader at a higher education conference this morning …” (more)

[Ross Malervy, University Times, 17 July]

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Micheál Martin calls for a separate Department of Higher Education and Research at IUA Future of Ireland Event

Posted in Governance and administration on July 17th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Speaking at the Irish Universities Association (IUA) inaugural Future of Ireland series, Leader of Fianna Fáil Micheál Martin called for the creation of a separate Department of Higher Education and Research and for clarity and certainty around core funding. Micheál Martin also highlighted the need to tackle the funding of the innovation gap between large and small enterprises, and the need for fostering diversity and accessibility within higher education …” (more, download)

[IUA, 17 July]

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Universities and autonomy

Posted in Governance and administration on July 17th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“I suspect that many people in the university sector are upset at government’s desire to exert more and more control over the third level sector. The presumption seems to be that universities will function optimally when allowed maximum autonomy. There is also a strong sense that if the proportion of an institution’s total income that comes from the state is declining, then the degree of control by the state should also be declining. It seems only fair …” (more)

[An Irish Blog about Education, 17 July]

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The Government’s Inertia on Cassells Is Now Bordering on the Absurd

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on July 16th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“It was around this time three years ago that the Cassells report – a groundbreaking review of potential higher education funding strategies – was officially released. Three years later, and still the government has failed to act. There’s been talk. Committees have convened. Options have been discussed. But the government has consistently failed to deliver on the report’s most crucial recommendation: action …” (more)

[Jack Synnott, University Times, 15 July]

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EU Verdict on Cassells Report Not Expected Until 2020

Posted in Governance and administration on July 15th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Ireland’s third-level institutes will have to wait until April 2020 to hear the verdict of EU analysis on the Cassells report, Minister for Education Joe McHugh has said. The report, which sets out three options for the future funding of Ireland’s higher education sector, has been with the European Commission since January 2019, when the government applied for economic advice on the report …” (more)

[Emer Moreau, University Times, 14 July]

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Third Level Funding

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on July 13th, 2019 by steve

IrelandThomas Byrne (Meath East, Fianna Fail): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills when the results of the economic analysis of the Cassells report on third-level funding referred to the European Commission will be made available …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 11 July]

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Technological Universities – Borrowing

Posted in Governance and administration on July 10th, 2019 by steve

IrelandEoin Ó Broin (Dublin Mid West, Sinn Fein): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills his plans to allow technical universities to access borrowing for the provision of purpose built student specific accommodation …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 9 July]

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Dubai royal family to fund TCD centre for Middle Eastern studies

Posted in Governance and administration on July 2nd, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Trinity College Dublin has refused to reveal how much money is being donated by the Al Maktoum Foundation for the establishment of a new centre for Middle Eastern studies at the university. The foundation is owned by the ruling royal family of Dubai, which has been accused of human rights abuses …” (more)

[Sorcha Pollak, Irish Times, 1 July]

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‘Generous gift’ to fund four new professorships at Trinity

Posted in Governance and administration on July 1st, 2019 by steve

Ireland“A ‘generous gift’ from a foundation closely linked to the royal family of Dubai and the prime minister of the United Arab Emirates is to fund four new professorships at Trinity College Dublin. Following the forming of a ‘strategic alliance’ between the university and the Al Maktoum College of Higher Education in Dundee, TCD has announced it is to open a new centre of Middle Eastern studies to promote research of the subject in Ireland …” (more)

[Jess Casey, Irish Examiner, 1 July]

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Trinity establishes Centre for Middle Eastern Studies

Posted in Research, Teaching on July 1st, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Trinity have announced this morning the establishment of a new Centre for Middle Eastern Studies and a strategic alliance between Trinity and the Al Maktoum College of Higher Education. Trinity is to appoint four new professors in Middle Eastern Studies to work in what will be known as the ‘Al Maktoum Centre for Middle Eastern Studies in Trinity College Dublin’ …” (more)

[Finn Purdy, Trinity News, 1 July]

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Half a billion euro surplus in State training fund ‘unacceptable’

Posted in Governance and administration on July 1st, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The Government has been criticised for running a ‘scandalous’ unspent surplus of about half a billion euro in a State training fund. Latest figures show the projected underspend for the National Training Fund – an employers’ levy aimed at supporting the training of those in employment – this year will be almost €200 million …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 1 July]

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Ministers publish the National Training Fund Expenditure Report 2019

Posted in Governance and administration on June 28th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD, the Minister of State for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD and the Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development John Halligan TD today published the National Training Fund Expenditure Report 2019 …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 28 June]

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Third Level Staff – staff/student ratio

Posted in Governance and administration, Teaching on June 27th, 2019 by steve

IrelandBilly Kelleher (Cork North Central, Fianna Fail): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the estimated full-year cost for each one point reduction in the academic staff-to-student ratio in universities …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 25 June]

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Student Accommodation Zoning Changes Aren’t an Affront to University Autonomy

Posted in Governance and administration on June 24th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“This Editorial Board sides with universities more often than they probably realise. On the issue of funding, we have long railed against the successive government decisions that have only served to prolong the now almost decade-long funding crisis …” (more)

[University Times, 23 June]

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Universities Legislation – Borrowing Framework

Posted in Governance and administration on June 21st, 2019 by steve

IrelandDavid Cullinane (Waterford, Sinn Fein): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the amount of borrowing, underwriting and guaranteeing activities notified to him under the borrowing framework provided for in section 38 of the Universities Act 1997 for each university since the institution of the framework in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 20 June]

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Third Level Funding – Cassells Report

Posted in Governance and administration on June 21st, 2019 by steve

IrelandCatherine Martin (Dublin Rathdown, Green Party): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills when the results of the economic analysis of the Cassells report on third-level funding referred to the European Commission will be made available; the provisions for institutions which reach a funding crisis point in the interim; and if he will make a statement on the matter …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 20 June]

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Rankings and Quality

Posted in Governance and administration on June 20th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Like the Leaving Cert, the announcement of university rankings leads to the same conversations year after year. The typical conversation goes like this: the rankings are meaningless because they use flawed methodologies but we still need to be worried about the signal a decline in rankings sends to the international community …” (more)

[An Irish Blog about Education, 20 June]

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