The University of Limerick (above) has  strongly denied the allegations regarding expenses claims and  said it welcomed the announcement of an  investigator being appointed. File photograph: Press 22

HEA to appoint external investigator after its chief executive met whistleblower

There was a 25% reduction in overall funding for the Schools Completion Programme – from €32.9 million in 2008 to €24.7 million for 2015. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

ESRI warns of loss of homework clubs, after-school programmes and counselling

 Minister for Education and Skills Jan O’Sullivan and Emirjeta Doda, a student attending Westland Row Secondary School, Dublin launching

Initiative aims to highlight options for school leavers in further and higher education

Almost a quarter of Leaving Cert candidates who appealed their result in higher level Mathematics received an upgrade, figures published by the State Examinations Commission on Wednesday show. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien/The Irish Times.

Results of appeals being sent to schools by courier because of uncertain postal situation

The report notes “there is a need to invest in digital devices in schools”. Photograph: Getty Images

New Leaving Cert subject proposed as €210 million allocated for digital strategy

William James: pragmatism is a way to tackle ordinary and intellectual issues

Moral truths can’t be spoon-fed to people by priests or sages, says Sarin Marchetti, invoking the wisdom of William James

Kieran Christie: incoming ASTI general secretary

Kieran Christie takes over a divided union that has dodged hard decisions

Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan has introduced new election procedures for the boards of primary schools. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Catholic management body issues advice on running of school board elections

The University of Limerick issued High Court proceedings against the Limerick Leader after it published details of allegations of financial mismanagement.

UL will ‘cooperate fully’ with any inquiry into claims of financial mismanagement

TCD drops to 160th in expanded world ranking - down from 43rd six years ago

The Government’s working group on third-level funding is due to report before the end of the year.

Irish policy makers told funding model ‘comes out on top’ for equity and impact

A separate settlement of €12.25 million was made this year by the State Examinations Commission  for its failure to treat properly for taxation purposes payments to examiners and other contract staff. File photograph: Bryan O’Brien/The Irish Times

State Examinations Commission settles €12.25m tax liability with the Revenue

A number of serious irregularities have been discovered in payments to schools under the free meals scheme. File photo: Thinkstock

Five schools referred to Garda over payment irregularities

Lotteries: could be used to keep ‘bad reasons’ out of decision-making

Using a lottery is preferable to distributing goods based on ‘bad reasons’, argues political scientist Peter Stone

Helena Wood, far left, of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra; Tanya Massey; Ronan Timmins; and leader of the RTÉ Concert Orchestra Mia Cooper at the launch of this year’s Fr Frank Maher Classical Music Awards

Plus: this year’s Fr Frank Maher Classical Music Awards

The whistleblower has been involved in the provision of learning support in a number of schools. Photograph: Getty Images

Investigation urged over claims time held for special needs is going to management duties

ASTI general secretary Pat King is to retire at the end of this year.

Long-time activist named to replace Pat King amid debate over recruitment procedure

ASTI president Máire Ní Chiarba: “Teachers, the practitioners in the classroom, understand how best to improve teaching and learning.” File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Union narrowly rejects latest reform plan and decides to resume industrial action

In the latest QS rankings University of Limerick went up from the 501-550 bracket to 471-480. File photograph: Press 22

Limerick college aims for 60% increase in foreign students in attempt to raise profile

Fr Michael Drumm, chair of the Catholic Schools Partnership. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Partnership would give Catholic Church and State joint control over school management

TUI president Gerry Quinn (centre left) protesting in Dublin. File photograph: Cyril Byrne

Plans to overhaul curriculum have been cause of contention for years

ASTI and TUI members were presented with two ballot papers one on whether to accept or reject the amended reform plan  and the other to mandate further industrial action if the proposals are rejected. Photograph: Eric Luke

Only 38 per cent of ASTI members opt to vote, rejecting plan by narrow margin

The ‘Fightback’ faction publicly questioned the motives of senior union officials. Photograph:  Don MacMonagle

Teachers’ union accuses ‘Fightback’ group undermining elected leadership

Minister for Education Jan O Sullivan: Seen as more supportive of the community national school model than her predecessor. Photograph: The Irish Times

Education and Training Boards planning 22 schools along community model by 2020

The conference heard that funding “cuts were having most impact on those who are least equipped to deal with the fallout”. Photograph: Getty Images

Bigger input required from employers to plug sector funding gap, conference told

An interdepartmental group has been set up to examine possible tax incentives to kick-start construction of student accommodation. File photograph:  Jason Lee/Reuters

Pre-budget submission recommends tax relief for construction of new student housing

Jan O’Sullivan: has annulled ‘unhappy union’

Minister Jan O’Sullivan quietly annuls planned union between teacher trainers MIC and UL

Hands up: US students are more likely to ask questions. Photograph: Getty images/Wavebreak Media

Students here do not participate in class as much as in the US, Irish survey finds

Massimo Pigliucci: “You want to pay attention to the here and now.”

Mindfulness with an ethical twist is the Stoic way, explains philosopher Massimo Pigliucci

Chuck Feeney: the Irish-American philanthropist   is planning a major investment in Trinity  before his charitable operations wind down. Photograph: Alan Betson

Philanthropist discussing investment in Trinity’s Institute of Neuroscience

Teachers may be required to 	demonstrate proficiency in information and communications technology. Photograph: Getty Images

Five-year strategy set to include greater investment in broadband for schools

Principal Treasa Leahy with third-year pupils at Mercy Secondary School, Inchicore, Dublin,  with their mobile devices, used for digital learning in schools. Photograph: Dave Meehan

DCU professor criticises OECD report that linked computer use with poor performance

A working group of the National Council for Special Education  last year recommended a new model of allocating the more than 11,000 learning support posts across schools in the State. File photograph: Dave Thompson/PA Wire

‘Reform of allocation system needed and I’m committed to achieving that’ - O’Sullivan

Ludwig Wittgenstein: ‘Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.’ Photograph: Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Cultivating ‘a sense of wonder that the world exists’ is central to Wittgenstein’s philosophy

Just 3.4 per cent of Irish teenagers use the internet for more than six hours during a typical weekday

OECD ranks Irish 15-year-olds sixth out of 32 states for ‘navigation proficiency’

Ireland has one of the lowest rates of internet use in schools in the world but it may be doing students more good than harm.

Intense computer use in class linked to ‘significantly poorer student performance’

UCD has dropped from 139 to 154 in the QS World University Rankings 2015/16

UCC and DIT also fall, but NUIG, DCU, UL and Maynooth University go up a few places

 Willie O’Dea: the Limerick TD says he may refer the matter to the Public Accounts Committee.  Photograph: Frank Miller

Higher education chief says more detail on allegations needed for inquiry to proceed

Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan (centre) with former ministers Niamh Bhreathnach  and Mary Hanafin, at the opening of the institute

Students in further education and training ‘are entitled to the best possible standards’, says Minister

The research shows gender biases remain strong in subject choices. Photograph: Getty Images

Boys still outnumber girls by six to one in technology subjects at the higher level

UCD students and faculty members  photographed in the college’s Garden of Rememberence where a moment’s silence was held for  the students who died and were injured in Berkeley, California. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Rose garden seats installed in honour of students who died during college years

Jessie Buttanshaw and Megan Lynch, (right) with their Junior Cert results at The High School, Rathgar, Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Of those who took higher level paper, 11.2% scored an A grade, up from 10.7% last year

Some of the most socially advantaged areas of Dublin are among the highest recipients of teaching supports for special needs. Photograph: The Irish Times

Department urged to consider targeting ‘funds at the child rather than at the school’

‘There should not be a difference between people who can afford a diagnosis and people who can’t’

Shortfall in state assessments, which unlock help, causes unfair distribution of resources

The second vote is aimed at closing off a doubt surrounding the legality of the ASTI/TUI industrial action

Plus: who’d be general secretary of the ASTI?

Thomas Francis Meagher: Meagher flew the first Tricolour flag on March 7th, 1848, from 33 the Mall, Waterford, at the Wolfe Tone Club.

Presentation of national flags to include instructions on protocol in preparation for Proclamation Day

Teachers and special needs assistants with students at Mother of Consolation School, Donnycarney, Dublin. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Trend linked to parents getting private diagnoses of needs to support applications

‘I am a big fan of maverick teachers who don’t simply carry out what the curriculum dictates.’ Above: Robin Williams in ‘Dead Poets Society’

Teachers should not try to make content ‘relevant’, says sociologist Frank Furedi

 Máire Whelan: Howlin insists Attorney General will not be used as scapegoat. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Nation would be ‘deeply wounded’ if Máire Whelan was lost, says Brendan Howlin

A new Central Applications Office (CAO) points scale for students entering third-level education aimed at taking some of the pressure off the Leaving Cert year has been published.

Bonus points for Leaving Cert maths to remain but will not extend to new ‘fail’ grade

The Drumroe Village  student accommodation at University of  Limerick. A Higher Education Authority report says third level institutions plan to spend €1.2 billion by 2024 on new bed spaces but a shortage of 25,000 beds will remain. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times.

Minister awards €30,000 grant to students’ union to promote rent-a-room scheme

 The revised Framework for Junior Cycle confirms that English will be the first subject assessed through classroom-based exercises in conjunction with a shorter exam at the end of third year. File photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Subject will be integrated across junior cycle by 2020 as part of revised reform timetable

ASTI members protesting earlier this year. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Leadership of secondary teachers’ union remains divided over compromise proposals

The former Burren National School is in significant disrepair.   Photograph: Keith Heneghan/Phocus

Government shelved plan that could have seen up to 32 Catholic schools in county merge

  TUI president Gerry Quinn (centre left) protesting in Dublin. File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

President of teachers’ union says compromise proposals address strike concerns

Waterford Institute Of Technology president Prof Willie Donnelly said the institute is fully committed to providing leadership in the delivery of the new university. Photograph: Patrick Browne/WIT

WIT president cites ‘need to address the issues of mutual trust and respect’

CAO course codes: smaller, specialised courses restrict student options and mobility. Photograph: Joe O’Shaughnessy

Number of ‘niche’ courses with small student intake is greater than estimated

A new Educate Together school had been due to open in September  in this derelict premises in Castlebar, which was surrendered by the Catholic Church under the ‘divestment of patronage’ process.  Photograph: Keith Heneghan / Phocus

Minister and Educate Together blame each other for problems at former church school

Change to Trinity College’s admissions procedure should allow students to specialise later in their studies. File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Figures show 20% of third-level courses admitted 10 students or less last September

Careers guidance is seen as a priority in curtailing college drop-out rates, according to a study by UCD researchers. Image: Getty

Researchers recommend new initiatives to reduce college drop-out rates

Dr Geraldine Mooney Simmie, University of Limerick, with Andrew Phelan (centre) and Mark Walshe of ASTI Fightback at a press conference at the Teachers’ Club, Parnell Square, Dublin

ASTI Fightback appeals to teachers to vote No to new Junior Cycle despite union stance

More than 40 per cent of successful applicants for student grants in Dublin last year came from just three postal districts, new figures from Susi show. File photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Susi figures reveal highest number of awards went to school-leavers in Co Dublin region

‘The apparent end-point of “new media” was articulated by digital entrepreneur and “King of Clickbait” Emerson Spartz in an interview in the New Yorker earlier this year.’ Photograph: Getty Images

‘On current projections we are heading for the worst of both worlds in the next Dáil: a populist government and a populist opposit(...)

Ibec has called for teachers to get ‘entrepreneurial thinking’ training.  File photograph: Getty Images/Thinkstock

Employers’ group says concept should be introduced at an earlier stage in education

Leaving Cert students wishing to appeal any of their results have until close of business on Tuesday to apply to their schools to view their scripts

CAO ‘available places’ facility opens for courses which have yet to be filled

Tom Doyle, chairman of the association’s farm business committee, said “it makes perfect sense” that a high proportion of farming families would qualify for the grant. Photograph: Sara Freund

Average farmer’s income is €24,000, making qualification for SUSI grant ‘inevitable’

Former minister for education Ruairí Quinn drew up proposals which would have seen assets above a certain threshold be considered in means-testing. File photograph: Frank Miller/The Irish Times

Ruairí Quinn suggested change when minister but faced criticism from Fine Gael TDs

There is research showing that PAYE workers have more difficulty in obtaining student grants for their children compared with farmers and the self-employed. File photograph: Getty Images

72% of CAO applicants in Longford get SUSI award compared with 46% in Dublin

New figures  show there is a drop of 2 per cent in the number of mature applicants (those over 23) through the CAO. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

As CAO offers come out, RIA says it’s unfair 20,000 students aren’t eligible for grants

At Trinity College Dublin, engineering is up 25 points to 495, although not all applicants will get in on that score, while engineering with management is up 45 to 505. Photograph:  Paul Ellis/AFP/Getty

Over 100 honours degree courses taking in less than 10 students, FOI figures show

Kate Bannon, Emily Griffin, Helen Carroll and Corinne Henry-Bezy getting their Leaving Cert results at Loreto College in Dublin last week. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Changes due to increased numbers, maths bonus points and fluctuating demand

A Leaving Cert paper in 2015 may be much easier than the equivalent exam in 2014. Photograph: The Irish Times

Exams commission adjusts marking scheme if paper is too hard or too easy

A statue of Socrates in Athens: the philosopher  was a “midwife” to the truth. Teachers must interrogate pupils’ standpoints and create critical thinking

A course in philosophy will be part of the new Junior Cycle. Its benefits are likely to be many but how will it be taught and asse(...)

Of the 4,408 students who took engineering at higher level in this year’s Leaving Cert, only 249 (5.6%) were girls. Photograph: The Irish Times/Peter Thursfield

Girls more reluctant to take on science, technology, engineering and mathematics

‘Compare the obstacles facing the average student with, for example, those faced by Joanne O’Riordan, the disability rights campaigner who was born without limbs and who last year got sufficient grades in the Leaving Cert to study criminology at UCC.’ Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

‘A troika-imposed measure means children with special educational needs receive only 85 per cent of recommended resource teachin(...)

Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan visits ‘The Irish Times’ helpdesk in the paper’s offices on Tara Street in Dublin. Pictured with her are career guidance counsellors Brian Mooney, Brian Howard and Deirdre Garrett. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Young woman who fled Ukraine hopes to study physiotherapy but cannot afford fees

Margo Fleming  came up with the idea of Booksplits, cut-and-paste packs for schoolchildren. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan

Booksplits cut-and-paste packs allow students to leave at home the section of texbooks not being used in class

Niamh Donnelly, Leopardstown, is congratulated by her mother Marion Donnelly, on getting her Leaving Cert results, at Coláiste Íosagáin, Stillorgan, Co Dublin. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

Minister says it is important to ensure maths bonus system ‘is working properly’

Students urged to keep ‘a sense of perspective’ and explore options outside of third level

Conor Gallagher from Ballsbridge, who got nine A1s in the Leaving Cert last year, celebrates with classmates. One student repeated the feat this year and got nine A1s. Photograph: Eric Luke

Rise in honours maths numbers stalls as ‘uplift’ effect of bonus points at its limit

Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan tqueried  whether the ordinary level maths Paper 1 was too hard. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Surprisingly strong results at ordinary level despite controversial Paper 1

Aoife ní Shúilleabháin with USI vice president for campaigns Daniel Waugh,  deputy president Annie Hoey and USI president Kevin Donoghue spread the word about  USI’s free rooms listing website  Photograph: Andres Poveda

Union of Students in Ireland steps up campaign to get home-owners to offer rooms as ‘digs’

Visit for advice, analysis and reaction in wake of the results

As more students take higher level maths bonus points awarded push up levels

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin at the opening of St James Catholic primary school in Basin Lane, Dublin, in April 2014, whose creation – out of two merging Catholic schools – allowed Educate Together move into a former Christian Brothers school next door.   Photograph: John Mc Elroy.

Christian Brothers’ lease conditions put future of Educate Together school in doubt

The State Examinations Commission has adjusted its marking scheme for  Leaving Cert ordinary-level maths  after concerns were raised about one of this year’s papers. File photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto

State Exams Commission changes grading of ordinary-level paper following criticism

UCC academics Prof Áine Hyland and Prof Brian Bocking believe Ireland “is in a process of erratic and unpredictable transition”  and religious and secular interests are “seemingly clashing head-on”. Photograph: William Thomas Cain/Getty Images

Ireland ‘utterly unlike’ other countries in its use of schools for faith formation

Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan: has expressed concern about the use of JobBridge in schools, saying she wished to be ensure there was ‘no abuse’ of the scheme. Photograph: The Irish Times

Sixteen special needs assistant posts and five primary among 94 internships advertised

‘One area I would emphasise is the rent a room idea,’ Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan said. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times

Jan O’Sullivan encourages homeowners to ‘rent a room’ to students

Minister for Education and Skills Jan O’Sullivan said the changes are aimed to offer viable alternatives to third level education. Photograph: Eric Luke / The Irish Times

Follow example of Jamie Oliver, Stella McCartney, Alex Ferguson, says Jan O’Sullivan

Trinity College Dublin:  TCD  received a bronze award for the institution as a whole and   bronze awards at departmental level for the schools of chemistry,  physics and natural sciences. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Four third-level colleges unsuccessful in first round of Athena SWAN accreditation scheme

Life choices: The Apprenticeship Council has identified more than 80 possible new apprenticeships. Photograph: Getty Images

Apprentices will be able study to honours degree level under expansion of scheme

Susi (Student Universal Support Ireland) has received 85,000 grant applications and is expecting to receive 110,000 before the deadline on Saturday.

Students advised to beat deadline of Saturday August 1st for applications

Louise  O’Keeffe and other abuse survivors have strongly criticised the scope of the compensation scheme, accusing the state of failing to accept its legal responsibility. Photograph: Garrett White/Collins

Limited scope of scheme criticised by abuse survivor Louise O’Keeffe

Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan said the leadership of both institutions have put forward an ambitious vision for a new type of institution. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Report says ‘no alternative’ to merger between Waterford IT and IT Carlow

‘The church proclaims to invite people to join in Catholic worship but there is nothing “invitational” about the role of the Catholic Church in the primary sector.’ Photograph: Getty Images

‘The church has it within its power to voluntarily cede some control so its schools are inclusive in both word and deed’

USI president Kevin Donoghue met Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan (above) last week to discuss the housing shortage facing students, and said “our conversations have been productive and there is an appetite to do something about it”. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill / The Irish Times.

Union of Students in Ireland says both long-term and emergency measures needed

University College Cork: President Michael Murphy has proposed a zero VAT rate on the construction of student accommodation

Over 25,000 students a year competing for private rental accommodation - HEA

UCC’s student centre: the university is to boost its international student cohort from 14 per cent to 20 per cent. Photograph: Matt Kavanagh

Concern over the shortage of bed spaces on campus is finally hitting the political ranks

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