Seanad debates

Thursday, 11 July 2019

Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) (Amendment) Bill 2018: [Seanad Bill amended by the Dáil] Report and Final Stages


10:30 am

Photo of Mary Mitchell O'ConnorMary Mitchell O'Connor (Dún Laoghaire, Fine Gael) | Oireachtas source

I thank Senators for their contributions. We have put together a really strong Bill which will underpin quality and the agenda in the higher and further education sector. Quality and Qualifications Ireland, QQI, will be a much stronger, more effective and responsive regulator. The Bill will enable it to tackle many challenges, especially among English language colleges and education providers. That said, there are many fine providers.

The introduction of the international education mark, IEM, will bring much needed regulation to the English language education sector. Quality standards will be underpinned by the IEM, providing greater assurance and protections for staff and students in the sector. This will make Ireland the destination of choice for an even greater number of international students.

I am also very happy to announce that the Bill will provide the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland with the opportunity to demonstrate its many qualities as an institution and in so doing obtain university status. I look forward to seeing the implementation of the legislation and the benefits it will bring to the education system.


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