The Irish Second-Level Students’ Union (ISSU) has warmly welcomed the remarks made by the Tánaiste and Minister for Education & Skills, Mary Coughlan at the TUI congress today. Speaking today (Wednesday) an ISSU spokesperson said:
“Minister Coughlan could be the catalyst for change that Irish Education needs. She is clearly bubbling with enthusiasm in her new role and is eager to bring about change. Students are now renewed with optimism at the possibility of bonus points for Leaving Certificate Maths. We also recognise her commitment to some flexibility on the moratorium on posts of responsibility in second-level schools, and her commitment to Junior Certificate reform. Project Maths is set expand to all schools from September; however it needs to be part of reform of the entire system to be truly successful. In a ground-breaking move the Minister has also hinted at this, in her recognition of the need to move away from a system that encourages rote learning in a step towards a system that fosters critical thinking. ISSU calls on the minister to encourage and support the great work of the Irish Second-Level Students’ Union in fostering student voice, participation and empowerment. It is important that she recognises that the needs of those we serve are a vital link in the decision making process ‘Remember Minister, we’re not citizens in waiting!’ We are on the brink of escalation of industrial action by the second-level teaching unions, however there is hope for the future of education if the Minister follows through with her commitments, ultimately the proof will be in the pudding”.
Notes to Editor:
ISSU is the national umbrella body for school Student Councils, aiming to represent and connect Irish second-level students the length and breadth of the country, ensuring that the voice of the Irish second-level student is heard and striving for innovation and democracy within the education system. ISSU is a not-for profit student rights organisation.
At ISSU we believe that young people are not merely citizens in waiting – we deserve better, we deserve to be heard. We can and will contribute positively to society. It is so important that our voices, views and opinions are (i) heard (ii) listened to (iii) and most importantly respected. This is what ISSU is all about. We’re here for you.
Our main aims include:
- To provide training and development of second-level school Student Councils, in conjunction with relevant bodies.
- To develop policies on issues affecting Irish second-level students and bring the needs and rights of students to the attention of the relevant authorities.
- To provide a transparent, democratic and reliable organisation.
- To work in collaboration with other educational institutions and bodies both in Ireland and Europe.
- To work closely with educational curriculum policy makers and teachers’ unions to continually develop a transparent, fair and modern education system.
- And most importantly, to give students a structured platform through which the voice of the Irish second-level student will be heard.
ISSU represents students at a national level and is affiliated to; Anna Lindh Foundation, Children’s Mental Health Coalition, Children’s Rights Alliance, NYCI, Stand up for Education Alliance, and the WHEEL. On an international level, ISSU works closely with OBESSU. ISSU also works with curriculum development teams and various advisory bodies.