Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Tuesday, 25 May 2021

Public Accounts Committee

Business of Committee

9:30 am

Photo of Brian StanleyBrian Stanley (Laois-Offaly, Sinn Fein) | Oireachtas source

We will seek that further information. The next piece of correspondence is No. 567 from Dr. Alan Wall, chief executive of the Higher Education Authority, HEA, dated 7 May. It provides further clarification as to the total number of employees, including occasional and hourly staff, in each of the three higher education sectors.

At our meeting last week, we agreed to note and publish this item and to include this topic for discussion in any future engagements with the HEA. We will engage with it later in the year. Analysing the information provided was an eye-opener for me. Of the 27,933 staff in universities, institutes of technology, technological universities and smaller colleges, approximately 10,364 or 38% are occasional or hourly. On foot of the committee’s inquires, the HEA stated it does not have a clear definition of "occasional staff” but plans to remedy this and provide the committee with an update. So, as members can see, the HEA has expressed concerns about this. It has been flagged by Deputy Catherine Murphy. Does she want to comment?


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