16 Dec 2020, 17.13

The Joint Committee on Education, Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science will meet tomorrow at 11.30am when representatives from DCU and the Cork Life Centre appear.

The following witnesses will appear in Committee Room 2, and on Oireachtas TV.

From 11.30am (Session 1)

•             Dr. Paul Downes, Director, Educational Disadvantage Centre, Dublin City University.

From 12.30pm (Session 2)

•             Don O’Leary, Director, Cork Life Centre.

•             Caoimhe Cotter, current student, Cork Life Centre.

•             Rhys Wooten, past student, Cork Life Centre.

The first session will explore the topic of marginalised students in primary and post primary DEIS schools and other settings, and the second session will discuss Early School Leavers and the role of alternative education.

Speaking in advance of the meeting, Committee Chairperson, Paul Kehoe TD, said: “The Committee will begin by exploring the topic of marginalised students in Primary and Post Primary DEIS Schools and other settings: System Gaps in Policy and Practice and the Priority Issues for consideration, with reference to the impact of Covid 19.

“Since the turn of the millennium, the DCU Educational Disadvantage Centre has been to fore, engaged in interdisciplinary research, policy and practice regarding poverty and social inclusion in education at global, EU and national levels, as well in the local community.” 

Chair Kehoe added: “Similarly, Cork Life Centre can be rightfully proud of its alternative education offering. It is not  a mainstream setting and it is clear that the pathway it offers learners works, and has done so for 20 years. All of us as Committee members will have a lot to learn from their appearance, and the input of staff, and past and current students.”

For more information about the work of the Joint Committee on Education, Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science seethe Committee webpage

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Committee membership


Fine Gael

Paul Kehoe - Chair

Fine Gael


Fianna Fáil


Fine Gael



Fianna Fáil

Green Party