Judge Petria McDonnell: Submission lodged with Justice Minister, Equalities Watchdog and Parliamentary Committee

Posted in Legal issues on July 9th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The Plaintiffs in Burkes v NUI Galway have serious concerns regarding the conduct of Circuit Court Judge Petria McDonnell. Today, they lodged a formal submission with the Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan TD, the Chief Commissioner of the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission, Emily Logan, and the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Justice and Equality …” (more, download)

[Burke Broadcast, 8 July]

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High Court appeal lodged in students’ discrimination case against NUIG

Posted in Legal issues on July 5th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The religious discrimination case of the four Burke siblings against NUIG is headed to the High Court as individual notices of appeal seeking another judge. They are pursuing their High Court appeal to seek a different judge for their case against NUIG after asking Judge Petria McDonnell to recuse herself at the Circuit Court hearing …” (more)

[Paul Kelly, Galway Daily, 4 July]

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High Court application for recusal of Judge Petria McDonnell

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on June 30th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The Burkes lodged an appeal in the High Court yesterday against Judge Petria McDonnell’s refusal to recuse herself from hearing their religious discrimination case against NUI Galway. They are seeking to have another judge take the case …” (more)

[Burke Broadcast, 29 June]

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Christian Students Win Right to Challenge NUI Galway in Court

Posted in Legal issues on June 3rd, 2019 by steve

Ireland“From the 18th to the 20th of June 2019, Galway Circuit Court will hear the linked cases of Isaac Burke, Kezia Burke, Enoch Burke, Ammi Burke -v- NUI Galway. This follows a Court ruling in December 2018 which overturned a key portion of the previous decision at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) …” (more)

[Burke Broadcast, 1 June]

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‘Dysfunctional’ Religion Schools Become One

Posted in Governance and administration on September 14th, 2018 by steve

Ireland“After a complex, protracted process that faced resistance from some of those involved, three ‘dysfunctional’ Trinity schools of religion have merged to become the unified School of Religion. Under the changes to the structure of the confederal schools of religion, a new single-honours undergraduate degree in religion is set to replace other existing courses …” (more)

[Kathleen McNamee, University Times, 13 September]

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Ministerial order on primary school teacher training to be renewed

Posted in Teaching on June 27th, 2018 by steve

“The Minister for Education intends to renew an order which allows for separate entry routes into primary school teacher training depending on the religion of the applicant. An existing ministerial order, which runs out at the end of August, allows Protestants apply for teacher training at the country’s largest teacher training facility at DCU through a separate mechanism, which has a lower CAO points requirement, as well as a lower Leaving Certificate results threshold …” (more)

[Emma O Kelly, RTÉ News, 27 June]

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Concern Over Presence of Catholic Group on Campus

Posted in Governance and administration on September 28th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The College Tribune has learnt that The Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS) will be on campus operating under the UCD Chaplaincy for the next two years. FOCUS who are based in the United States are a volunteer organisation whose stated mission is to ‘share the hope and joy of the gospel with college and university students’. The group have been the subject of some controversy in the last number of years due to the hard-line fundamentalist approach to the Churches teaching …” (more)

[College Tribune, 27 September]

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Chaplain: Majority of UCC students ‘not anti-Church’

Posted in Life on August 24th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The chaplain at one of the country’s biggest universities has said only a small number of students are ‘anti-Church’ and ‘make a lot of noise’ and that many are ‘not completely disconnected’ from their faith. Fr Marius O’Reilly, the chaplain at University College Cork, admitted that when he was appointed to the position three years ago he was ‘a bit afraid’ … ” (more)

[Noel Baker, Irish Examiner, 24 August]

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Religious identity a determining factor in DCU primary school teaching courses

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Legal issues on August 26th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“Dublin City University will offer two alternative pathways to students wishing to enter a primary school teaching course this year, with a determining factor in the review process being whether or not an applicant is of a Catholic, Protestant or other religious background …” (more)

[The College View, 26 August]

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Different points to enter Teacher Training College

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on August 23rd, 2016 by steve

Ireland“RTÉ revealed that DCU’s newly formed Teacher Training course, which amalgamated 3 previous colleges of education into its campus, has two separate CAO entry points. In order to get their Bachelor of Education degree, there is the normal route for everyone, which requires 465 points. However, according to their current Prospectus, there is also a ‘restricted entry’ version of the degree …” (more)

[Anseo.net, 23 August]

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Religion a factor in teacher and nursing training

Posted in Governance and administration on August 22nd, 2016 by steve

Ireland“The dominance of the churches in primary education here has led to an unusual situation at Dublin City University, writes RTÉ Education Correspondent Emma O Kelly. This year sees the full incorporation into DCU of three former colleges of education – the Catholic St Patrick’s and Mater Dei …” (more)

[RTÉ News, 22 August]

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Very few students attend campus religious services, figures show

Posted in Governance and administration on April 11th, 2016 by steve

Ireland“A handful of students are turning up to weekly Masses held in some third-level colleges, new figures show. While colleges and universities spend about €1.5 million in public funds annually to employ chaplains, attendance rates at services in many institutions are in single figures …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 11 April]

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NI Catholics outnumber Protestants in university

Posted in Life on January 20th, 2016 by steve

UK“There have been calls in Northern Ireland for universities to be more welcoming to Protestants after it was revealed that 50% more Catholics are studying in top institutions there. Last year, 45.3% of students from Northern Ireland at university were Catholic. Just 29.5% of the students said that they were Protestant …” (more)

[Wayne O’Connor, Independent, 20 January]

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Catholic fear and loathing in our universities

Posted in Life on November 9th, 2014 by steve

Ireland“Catholic students are being silenced in our universities and labelled ‘bigots’ and ‘homophobes’ if they openly express their religion, a former chaplain at UCC has claimed …” (more)

[Claire Mc Cormack, Independent, 9 November]

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New teaching institute sparks religious row

Posted in Governance and administration on June 30th, 2014 by steve

“A row is brewing over plans for a new multidenominational Institute of Education at Dublin City University, which will train Catholic and Protestant teachers together for the first time …” (more)

[Sarah Mac Donald, Independent, 30 June]

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Quinn advises teachers to study RE to boost their job prospects

Posted in Teaching on June 21st, 2014 by steve

“Teachers seeking to maximise their job prospects would be advised to study religious education, Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn has said at the announcement of a major reform in teacher training …” (more)

[Joe Humphreys, Irish Times, June 21]

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Teaching more maths, less religion

Posted in Teaching on February 10th, 2014 by steve

“Breda O’Brien (Opinion, February 1st) uses data from the PIRLS and TIMSS 2011 studies to support her claim that religion should retain its current number of hours in the Irish curriculum. As the researcher responsible for managing the studies in Ireland, I wish to point out inaccuracies in her description of the findings of PIRLS and TIMSS …” (more)

[Eemer Eivers, Irish Times, 10 February]

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Primary teachers should use religious class time to teach maths, says Quinn

Posted in Teaching on January 25th, 2014 by steve

“Primary school teachers who are hard pressed to find enough hours in the day to address the school curriculum should consider switching time from religious instruction to providing literacy and numeracy skills. That is the view of Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn …” (more)

[Tim O’Brien, Irish Times, 25 January]

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Jesus taught rather well without a degree from the college of education

Posted in Teaching on October 24th, 2013 by steve

“… The college of education has become the agent of a mindless sectarian division. Its teachers should be hired for their professional ability alone, not their religion. How could schools hope to find the best teachers from such a tiny minority? Most of us educated in Irish Protestant schools will answer — they can’t …” (more)

[Victoria White, Irish Examiner, 24 October]

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Catholic and Islamic voices decry stem cell ‘bias’

Posted in Research on February 21st, 2013 by steve

“The success of adult stem cell research is being underplayed in favour of more controversial work using embryonic cells, according to religious figures who blame ‘aggressive secularism’ and the ‘personal investment’ of researchers in their projects for the alleged bias …” (more)

[Elizabeth Gibney, Times Higher Education, 21 February]

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