The possibility of schools being legally liable if staff or pupils contract coronavirus on the premises has not been ruled out

Posted in Legal issues on July 10th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“The possibility of schools being legally liable if staff or pupils contract coronavirus on the premises has not been ruled out. Seán Ó’Foglú, secretary general of the Department of Education, told the Oireachtas Covid-19 committee today that he could neither ‘confirm nor deny’ that such an eventuality could become a legal matter for schools …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 10 July]

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Leaving Cert calculated grades open to danger of gender bias

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on July 1st, 2020 by steve

Ireland“The Department of Education and Skills assumes that teachers will act professionally when estimating the percentage mark that their students might have received in the 2020 Leaving Cert, and in the ranking of their students relative to one another …” (more)

[Pat O’Connor, Irish Times, 1 July]

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Emergency call point pillars with strobe lights installed at University of Limerick to reduce risk of sexual assault

Posted in Governance and administration on June 25th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Six dedicated emergency call point pillars have been installed in the University of Limerick campus in order to further enhance the security of students and reduce the risk of sexual assault. The news comes as the president of the university, Dr Des Fitzgerald, addressed the issue of sexual assaults on the campuses of higher education institutions in Ireland saying there ‘can be no mistaking the fact that they are grossly underreported’ …” (more)

[Aine Fitzgerald, Limerick Leader, 24 June]

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Where next for the Leaving Cert?

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on June 23rd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“‘Teachers will predict the grades of their own students and there will be no Leaving Cert exam’ – if you’d suggested this at the start of 2020, teachers, unions, parents, students and the Department of Education would have assumed you were sleep-talking through a far-fetched Leaving Cert dream …” (more)

[Peter McGuire, Irish Times, 23 June]

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‘Small number’ of schools yet to complete calculated-grades upload

Posted in Teaching on June 23rd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“A ‘small number’ of schools have yet to complete the process of uploading data relating to calculated grades for Leaving Certificate 2020. The Department of Education’s calculated-grades collection system – which allows schools to upload data on the estimated marks and class rankings for Leaving Cert students – was due to shut at close of business on Monday …” (more)

[Éanna Ó Caollaí, Irish Times, 22 June]

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Government launches 17,000 free and subsidised higher education places on Springboard+ 2020 and Human Capital Initiative (HCI) Pillar 1

Posted in Governance and administration on June 17th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“The Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD, Minister of State for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O’Connor and Minister of State for Training Skills, Innovation, Research and Development John Halligan today announced almost 17,000 new places to be made available to people seeking to upskill or reskill …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 17 June]

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Schools begin sending calculated Leaving Cert grades

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on June 8th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Secondary schools are due to begin sending calculated grades for more than 60,000 Leaving Cert students to the Department of Education from Monday. An online portal is due to go live from midday on Monday which will allow schools to begin feeding back their students’ grades …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 8 June]

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Covid-19: ‘Open the gates’ approach to third level was dismissed over drop-out fears

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on June 4th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“An ‘open the gates’ approach to third-level entry was considered as an alternative to this summer’s Leaving Cert, but the suggestion was dismissed over concerns it would lead to ‘significant’ drop-outs. Matriculation exams and SAT admissions tests were also considered as alternative routes to third level this year …” (more)

[Jess Casey, Irish Examiner, 4 June]

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€201k salary for Trinity College head breaches approved limit

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on June 4th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“The head of Ireland’s oldest university, Trinity College Dublin, has been overpaid since 2011 as his salary is ‘in breach’ of what was approved by the Department of Education. Paddy Prendergast is paid €201,000 a year, but an external audit report, seen by the Irish Examiner, concludes that benefit-in-kind relating to his use of the provost’s lodge on campus exceeded the approved rate …” (more)

[Daniel McConnell, Irish Examiner, 4 June]

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Almost 1,000 students fail to register before calculated grades deadline

Posted in Teaching on May 29th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Almost 1,000 Leaving Cert students have failed to register for their calculated grades ahead of Friday’s extended noon deadline. A total of 98% of the 61,029 students registered to sit the Leaving Cert have registered and are set to receive their results in August …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 29 May]

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State Won’t Cover Colleges’ Financial Losses, Expected to Total €500m

Posted in Governance and administration on May 26th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“The government has warned that it will not cover financial losses faced by third-level colleges due to the coronavirus pandemic, which are expected to amount to at least half a billion euro …” (more)

[Ciaran Molloy, University Times, 26 May]

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Minister McHugh announces online registration for Leaving Certificate Calculated Grades opens on Tuesday 26 May

Posted in Teaching on May 25th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“­All Leaving Certificate and Leaving Certificate Applied students should register now on gov.ie/leavingcertificate. The Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD today (Monday 25 May 2020) announced that the new online Calculated Grades Student Portal will open for registration to Leaving Certificate and Leaving Certificate Applied students tomorrow Tuesday 26 May …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 25 May]

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Leaving Cert: ASTI agrees to engage with calculated grades process after indemnity row resolved

Posted in Legal issues, Teaching on May 22nd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“The Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland (ASTI) has agreed to engage with the Leaving Cert calculated grades process after getting further clarification on the State indemnity. It clears the way for its members to start the process of providing estimated marks for their students, as an alternative to sitting written exams …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 22 May]

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Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD announces publication of guidance for schools on Calculated Grades

Posted in Teaching on May 22nd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD has today (21 May 2020) announced the publication of detailed guidance on the new system of Calculated Grades for this year’s Leaving Certificate. The document is being sent to all post-primary schools today, to provide teachers and principals with information on the process of estimating marks for students to receive Calculated Grades …” (more)

[Department of Education and Skills, 21 May]

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Leaving Cert students must ‘opt in’ to receive calculated grades

Posted in Teaching on May 21st, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Leaving Cert students will not automatically receive calculated grades but will have to to opt-in for them under a new online system being set up to manage the cancellation of exams. Students will also have the opportunity to re-nominate their subject levels – such as higher, ordinary and foundation – at which they wish to receive their calculated grades, according to well-placed sources …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 21 May]

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Please don’t let an algorithm have the final say on Leaving Cert grades

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on May 19th, 2020 by steve

“Algorithms built on biased data can never be unbiased, and the recent decision to adjust grading for the Leaving Cert based on previous school performance will weigh heavily on DEIS students …” (more)

[Elaine Burke, Silicon Republic, 18 May]

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Parents and Leaving Cert students warned against offering incentive to teachers in bid to influence grades

Posted in Teaching on May 15th, 2020 by steve

“The Department of Education has warned parents and Leaving Cert candidates off offering any inducement to teachers in a bid to influence grades they award under the new assessment system replacing the Leaving Cert …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 15 May]

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Leaving Cert students cannot contact teachers or discuss estimated marks – Department of Education

Posted in Teaching on May 13th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Teachers and Leaving Cert candidates cannot have any further discussions about the student’s performance in the past two years, nor can they talk about the estimated mark that the teacher will award a pupil under the new calculated grades system …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 12 May]

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‘No Indication’ Tuition Fee Increases Are ‘Imminent’, Says HEA

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on May 12th, 2020 by steve

“There has been ‘no indication’ from the Department of Education and Skills that any changes to third level institutions’ fee levels are imminent, according to a spokesperson for the Higher Education Authority (HEA). Concerns have emerged on how University College Dublin (UCD) intends to mitigate a negative financial impact of up to €100 million by the end of this year …” (more)

[Conor Capplis, College Tribune, 12 May]

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Teachers’ unions seek clarity on predictive Leaving Cert grading

Posted in Legal issues, Teaching on May 11th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“The country’s largest teachers’ union is seeking legal advice over fears teachers could be sued due to the calculated grades they give this year’s Leaving Cert students. There are also major concerns around schools reopening safely in September, given it was deemed unsafe for students to hold the Leaving Cert exams during July and August …” (more)

[Jess Casey, Irish Examiner, 11 May]

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