14 December, 2016 – Minister Halligan hears views from Further Education and Training Sector regarding Brexit, at the Croke Park Conference Centre Dublin

The Minister for Skills, Training and Innovation John Halligan T.D., today (14 December, 2016) gave the opening address at the Further Education and Training Sector All-Island Dialogue on Brexit.

This event is part of the Government’s ongoing consultative work on Brexit in advance of the start of EU negotiations with the UK. Building on the contingency planning which took place before the 23 June vote and the current sectoral analysis being undertaken by Departments and Agencies, the All-Island Civic Dialogue process provides an opportunity to hear the voices of people affected by the vote, both directly and through their representative groups.

After an initial All-Island Civic Dialogue plenary in early November, this Further Education and Training Dialogue is the first of a series of sectoral dialogues on a range of areas that are to take place in the coming weeks.

This event is part of a larger series of consultations that are planned at sectoral level.  Minister Halligan said, “These dialogues will take place across all key sectors of the economy and society. The government is committed to continuing this consultation – it is clear there is an appetite for people to get involved and to be part of the solution”.  

Minister Halligan added “Today’s event will help us to hear from the sector on the priority issues for the further education and training sector and will provide very important input to the Department and Government Brexit preparations and planning, which has been ongoing for over a year now. Over the coming weeks my Department will intensify consultations with all stakeholders in our education system including also the higher education and research, primary and post-primary education sectors”.  

A focus of the Department’s consultations will be the risks and impacts that are anticipated across the sector. Relations and co-operation with Northern Ireland will also feature as a central element in these events.

The Department’s analysis to date suggests that Brexit is likely to impact on a number of levels of education, including primary, secondary, further education and higher education/research.

Ends

Notes for Editors

The All-Island Civic Dialogue, hosted by the Taoiseach and the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade on 2 November, 2016 was an important element in the Government's preparations to meet the broad range of all-island challenges posed by Brexit. This event provided an opportunity to hear the voices of people affected by the vote, both directly and through their representative groups.

As part of the Government’s consultative work on Brexit, and to facilitate a more detailed consideration of the impact of Brexit across a range of key sectors, a series of All-Island Sectoral Dialogues will be held across the country over the coming months.

At the Education sector Brexit briefing event on 14 November, 2016 in Dublin the Department of Education and Skills announced plans to convene further sectoral consultation fora. The Further Education and Training sector forum is the first such forum and is designed to enable a more detailed exploration and discussion of issues and implications for the sector. Its outputs are intended to assist in the Department in its preparations for the Brexit negotiation phase. This event will have an all-island dimension with participation by delegates from Northern Ireland.

A Brexit consultation forum for the higher education and research sector is scheduled to take place on 19 December in Co. Louth. A similar event for the primary and post-primary education sector will take place in January 2017.