Wednesday, 6 November 2019
Education (Student and Parent Charter) Bill 2019: Committee Stage
Paul Gavan (Sinn Fein)
I move amendment No. 7:
In page 6, to delete lines 24 to 27 and substitute the following:“(7) The Minister shall review the charter guidelines every 5 years; and may make such amendments to the charter guidelines as he or she considers necessary or appropriate following this review.”.
This amendment concerns the review element of the guidelines. It is proposed that they be reviewed by the Minister at his or her discretion. Unfortunately, experience tells us that it is a case of "whenever suits", as opposed to when there is evidence that there are systemic flaws. It is for that reason we have tabled a very sensible, moderate amendment to have a review conducted by the Department every five years. I hope the Minister will see it as a reasonable step forward. The difficulty with the existing wording is that it is just too loose. It means that we do not know when or if a review will take place.