New Events


no events posted in last week

Blog Feeds



offsite link Belgian ‘Health’ Ministry Says Shut ... Thu Dec 03, 2020 08:33 | The Times

offsite link Only Four Hospitals in the Whole of Engl... Thu Dec 03, 2020 05:07 | Connor Boyd

offsite link Washington Is Writing Security Checks to... Wed Dec 02, 2020 23:33 | Ted Galen Carpenter

offsite link Biden Lost Black Voters Everywhere…Exc... Wed Dec 02, 2020 15:30 | Patrick Basham

offsite link Turkey Opens Secret Channel to Fix Ties ... Wed Dec 02, 2020 14:28 | Amberin Zaman

Anti-Empire >>

The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

offsite link Donald Trump: ?This may be the most important speech I?ve ever made?.? Wed Dec 02, 2020 22:23 | The Saker

offsite link Chicken Kiev Meets Cold Turkey: Black Sea Axis Emerges? Wed Dec 02, 2020 18:27 | amarynth
South Front Written and produced by SF Team: J.Hawk, Daniel Deiss, Edwin Watson On the face of it, an alliance between Turkey and Ukraine seems like a rather odd creation,

offsite link Moveable Feast Cafe 2020/12/02 ? Open Thread Wed Dec 02, 2020 04:30 | Herb Swanson
2020/12/02 04:30:02Welcome to the ‘Moveable Feast Cafe’. The ‘Moveable Feast’ is an open thread where readers can post wide ranging observations, articles, rants, off topic and have animate discussions of

offsite link A truck driver with USPS says he was suspicious of his cargo load of 288,000 COMPLETED ballots Tue Dec 01, 2020 22:06 | The Saker

offsite link USPS contractor: ?Something profoundly wrong occurred in Wisconsin during the presidential election? Tue Dec 01, 2020 20:20 | The Saker

The Saker >>

Public Inquiry
Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005

offsite link David Quinn’s selective tolerance

offsite link A Woulfe in judges clothing Anthony

offsite link Sarah McInerney and political impartiality Anthony

offsite link Did RTE journalists collude against Sinn Fein? Anthony

offsite link Irish Examiner bias Anthony

Public Inquiry >>

Search author name words: James R

Bleeding Education Dry

category national | rights, freedoms and repression | opinion/analysis author Monday December 13, 2004 13:26author by James R - WSM personal capacity Report this post to the editors

OECD Report Advocates Increased Fees, More Inequality

Something is seriously amiss in education. Inequality of access is rampant and it doesn't take a genius to figure out that the latest Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) report and bouts of rhetoric from the government are going to do little to solve it. Beaten back two years ago, the government is once again trying to introduce fees, this time dumping the idea onto the OECD. Meanwhile, back home it uses its own shoddy track record in tackling educational inequality as a justification.

It comes as no shock that out of 26 countries the OECD surveyed Ireland is the fourth richest, yet comes second last in funding education. In 1999 3.2 per cent of students left the formal education system before even taking the Junior Cert. A 1998 literacy survey found that 1 in 10 children still leave primary school with significant reading problems caused by a lack of resources. Most research proves there is a direct correlation between the social background of a kid and their access to education at any given level.

The OECD identifies a funding crisis in education, something anyone working in education could have told you. This year saw a series of heavy cuts imposed in order to force University heads into accepting fees. Yet despite a funding crisis that led to library cuts last year, the President of UCD Hugh Brady still managed to find euro 1.6m for house renovations paid for by the college.

As in UCD, this is an issue of priorities. Nothing is making this clearer than the state's plans for third level. Reneging on its social duty to fund education, it intends to let private companies fill the gap endangering academic freedom and educational quality in the process. John Dawkins is the main driving force behind the latest OECD report, a former Australian education minister who oversaw similar changes in Australian education in the 1980's. One of the consequences of this was a 38% fall in the numbers of working class men entering third level education and a drop of 17,000 mature students enrolling annually. Fear of accumulating debt was the reason given by 61% of prospective students from low-income backgrounds for their decision not to go to third level. A fact much ignored by Irish media commentators who laud this Australian 'loan model', while buying all the bullshit about inclusion the Education minister has to sell.

Imposing more fees at the college door will only compound the problems of high rents, increased work pressures, miserable incomes and crap grants that drive most people away from third level. And God knows what it will do to tackle underfunding in primary and secondary schools. One thing is for certain, until we stand up and begin to promote a vision of education as a social right for all rather than something reserved for those that can pay and for business interests to exploit, we can expect the inequality to continue. Decisions like Brady's gaff will also continue, until those involved in education control the decisions affecting them. Opposition so far has been meek, its time to crank it up into a movement that can issue more than just press releases, reports and declarations. Instead we need actions and occupations across the campuses involving workers on shit contracts, researchers whose work has no value to business and students subsisting below even the essentials.

Related Link:

 #   Title   Author   Date 
   good stuff     Chris Bond    Mon Dec 13, 2004 19:17 
   Interesting article     shoegirl    Mon Dec 13, 2004 23:28 
   Fees     Chris Bond    Tue Dec 14, 2004 20:40 

© 2001-2020 Independent Media Centre Ireland. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by Independent Media Centre Ireland. Disclaimer | Privacy