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Seanad Éireann - Private Members Business 
Wednesday 12 July 2017

That Seanad Éireann:

- Affirming its commitment to providing equality of access to education at primary, secondary and third-level,

- Recognising the benefits, culturally and economically, of the historic decision to invest in publicly funded secondary education in Ireland and recognising also that the introduction of publicly funded third level education further encouraged a generation of young people to attain the highest levels of education,

- Acknowledging that, while publicly funded third level access no longer exists across the board, a significant number of people, particularly those from rural and lower socio-economic backgrounds, benefit from a publicly funded path to third level,

- Further recognising that a number of contributing factors have led to a significant gap in funding for the third level sector and that, while this shortfall must be addressed, it cannot be at the expense of those most vulnerable in our society,

- Calls on the Government to affirm its commitment to providing equality of access to education for all; to reject any move to implement an income contingent loan scheme to fund third level education; and to adopt a policy of ending college fees and implementing a truly publicly funded higher education system in Ireland.
[Senators Ivana Bacik, Kevin Humphreys, Ged Nash, Aodhán Ó’Riordain]