Fury over exclusion of students in private colleges from free antigen tests

Posted in Governance and administration on December 7th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“A row has erupted over the exclusion of students in private higher education colleges from the free antigen testing programme rolled out by Minister Simon Harris. The Higher Education Colleges Association (HECA) say they, the students and their families were ‘appalled’ at the decision …” (more)

[Independent, 7 December]

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Students to Suffer From UCD’s Exam Cop-Out

Posted in Teaching on December 7th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“This editorial was written as 5,600 positive cases of COVID-19 were reported in Ireland. The day before, for (approximately) the 625th day in a row our phones buzzed with the Irish Times notification of yet again another lump sum of positive cases being reported …” (more)

[College Tribune, 7 December]

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NUI Galway students express outrage over lack of social distancing in exam centres

Posted in Teaching on December 7th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“National University of Ireland Galway (NUI Galway) has been heavily criticised by students following the lack of health precautions implemented at the return of in-person exams which began today, December 6 …” (more)

[Grace Gageby, Trinity News, 6 December]

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Keep in-person exams at third level

Posted in Governance and administration on December 7th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Sir, – Before decision makers in higher education institutions heed the calls from students’ unions to run exams online, they would do well to read Carl O’Brien’s report ‘Exam answers in 30 minutes’ (November 13th) on the extensive resources available online to help students to cheat …” (more)

[Shane O Rourke, Irish Times, 6 December]

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Third-level students to receive free Covid-19 antigen tests

Posted in Governance and administration on December 6th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“The Government is to provide free Covid-19 antigen tests for third-level students in a bid to encourage their use on college campuses. Minister for Higher Education Simon Harris will today announce a €9 million fund for further and higher education institutions to provide tests to students …” (more)

[Pat Leahy, Irish Times, 6 December]

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Some colleges to carry out in-person exams despite Covid concerns raised by students

Posted in Governance and administration on December 4th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Many of the Irish third level institutions have said they will continue to implement in-person exams this Christmas despite pushback from students …” (more)

[Garreth MacNamee, TheJournal.ie, 4 December]

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UCD ‘bombarded’ with complaints about Dolores Cahill’s employment

Posted in Governance and administration on December 3rd, 2021 by steve

Ireland“University College Dublin (UCD) was bombarded with complaints and correspondence from students, graduates, staff members, and other medical practitioners about the continued employment of Dolores Cahill at the university …” (more)

[Ken Foxe, Irish Examiner, 3 December]

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NUIG students criticise university for holding mass in-person exams

Posted in Teaching on December 3rd, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Students at NUI Galway have strongly criticised the university for its decision to continue mass in-person exams for students this year despite growing concerns about rising Covid-19 cases. Photos and videos of NUIG’s exam hall layout have spread around social media with many students complaining that desks were not set up in a socially distanced manner …” (more)

[Jade Wilson, Irish Times, 3 December]

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No Booster in Sight …

Posted in Teaching on December 3rd, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Data from the last few days provide just a hint that the recent increase in Covid-19 infection in Ireland may be slowing down. Even if this is the case, though, the level of Coronavirus in circulation is very high, much higher than it was this time last year ahead of the Christmas surge and this year there’s the apparently much more transmissible omicron variant to throw into the mix …” (more)

[In the Dark, 2 December]

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Covid-19 Pandemic – Third-Level Exams

Posted in Teaching on December 3rd, 2021 by steve

IrelandÉamon Ó Cuív (Galway West, Fianna Fail): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills if it is planned to introduce health regulations in relation to the holding of in-person third-level examinations between the end of November and Christmas 2021 in view of the risk that they might become super-spreader events and cause Covid-19 to be reintroduced by students returning home for Christmas to households throughout the country including parents, vulnerable family members and grandparents; and if he will make a statement on the matter …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 1 December]

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Third Level Examinations

Posted in Governance and administration on December 2nd, 2021 by steve

IrelandRose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills if students will have a remote option for end of semester exams; and if he will make a statement on the matter …” (more)

[Dáil debates, 30 November]

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Unfair to expect third-level students to defer exams due to Covid – Rose Conway-Walsh TD

Posted in Teaching on December 1st, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Sinn Féin spokesperson on Further and Higher Education, Rose Conway-Walsh TD, has labelled the department’s response to rising Covid numbers as ‘completely inadequate’. After raising the issue in the Dáíl with Minister Harris, Teachta Conway-Walsh said …” (more)

[Sinn Féin, 1 December]

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Covid-19 Ireland: Trinity students call for cancellation of in-person exams across the country

Posted in Teaching on December 1st, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Trinity students will be heading to the Dáil today to delivery an open letter to Minister for Higher Education, Simon Harris and Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly. The students will call on Government to cancel in-person exams across the country this year as Covid-19 cases continue to rise …” (more)

[Roisin Cullen, DublinLive, 1 December]

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Lecturers to Lobby for High Risk Staff to be Allowed to Work from Home

Posted in Governance and administration on November 29th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Trinity’s branch of the Irish Federation of University Teachers (IFUT) has voted to lobby for staff over 60, and those in the HSE’s ‘high-risk’ category, to be allowed to work from home until they receive a booster vaccine …” (more)

[Emer Moreau, University Times, 29 November]

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Covid and teaching at third-level

Posted in Governance and administration on November 29th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Sir, – When the history of the pandemic in Ireland is written, the universities will undoubtedly be singled out, along with schools, for their apparent stoicism in keeping their doors open amid rising infection rates amongst staff and students …” (more)

[Sarah Alyn Stacey, Irish Times, 29 November]

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Calls to Cancel In-Person Exams Again Should not Claim to be Representative

Posted in Teaching on November 29th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Students are heading into the fourth consecutive assessment period impacted by the coronavirus. We should know what to do at this stage, but there persists a lack of joined-up thinking among representatives …” (more)

[University Times, 28 November]

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Maynooth University to hold majority of exams online after 4,000 students sign petition

Posted in Teaching on November 26th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Maynooth University has announced that they will hold the majority of January exams online after a petition calling for in-person tests to be scrapped received thousands of signatures. The petition was set up by the University’s Students’ Union who said on-campus exams cannot go ahead due to the ‘uncertain public health situation nationwide’ …” (more)

[Emma Nevin, DublinLive, 26 November]

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Exam Deferral Only Permitted if Student is a Possible COVID Case

Posted in Teaching on November 26th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Students will not have an automatic right to defer exams as they have done for the previous three assessment periods, Trinity’s senior lecturer has said. Students will only be allowed to defer examinations if they develop coronavirus symptoms, test positive for the virus or are a close contact of a positive case close to their exams …” (more)

[Jody Druce, University Times, 26 November]

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Third Level Christmas Exams

Posted in Teaching on November 26th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“University College Cork has become the first third-level institution to announce that all of its mid-year December exams are to be held online next month. But other colleges are pressing ahead with their in-person exams, some involving thousands of students …” (mp3)

[RTÉ – Drivetime, 25 November]

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NUIG Student Union slams university for ‘playing Russian roulette with the health of students’

Posted in Teaching on November 25th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“NUI Galway has been strongly criticised by its Student Union for the decision to continue in-person examinations this year, despite rising Covid cases. Other institutions around the country such as University College Cork are providing options for students to take exams from home, but NUIG has shared no such plans …” (more)

[Hugh Carr, Joe.ie, 25 November]

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