The Department of Further and Higher Education have invited public consultation on the guiding principles and strategic direction of the department going forward.
The Statement of Strategy for 2023 to 2025 will act as a set of guidelines for the department to follow, and will establish how the department will work for this period of time, marking a new stage for the department which was established in 2020.
Speaking today, Minister Simon Harris said that the department “want to ensure that we give everyone an opportunity to give us the benefit of your experiences”.
Harris continued: “I would strongly encourage anyone out there with an interest in social inclusion, education, science, or innovation to speak up and help us ensure that this is a department that works for you. We want to hear your thoughts.”
Members of the public can submit their ideas for the future of the department by emailing [email protected], with the subject line “Statement of Strategy 2023-2025”.
The new Statement of Strategy will build on the work of the previous department statement from 2021-2023.
Under the previous statement, the department established four new technological universities, launched the Funding the Future framework for the funding of higher education, and most significantly, passed the Higher Education Authority Act 2022, which provided for major changes to the governance of universities in Ireland.
The department also announced the implementation of the Unified Tertiary Education policy, which will allow students who begin in further education to go on to complete their third-level qualification in higher education.
Commenting on the success of this previous Statement of Strategy, Minister Harris said: “This department has engaged in many exciting projects to transform further and higher education, to advance Ireland’s research and innovation agenda and to foster and support greater collaboration between these sectors for the good of learners, industry and wider society.”
“My department is helping our economy and our people prepare for the challenges of the future,” he said.
Minister of State for Skills and Further Education Niall Collins added: “This department is working hard to ensure our people have the skills they will need for the future and that those skills can be provided by a tertiary system that supports all ambitions and educational journeys. The department is equally interested in improving the opportunities for vulnerable groups in society through support and funding.”
He added: “Please take advantage of this opportunity to share your thoughts on what you would like to see the department focus on over the next three years.”
The closing date for receipt of submissions is 5pm on 29 March 2023.