19 February, 2019 - Minister appoints new Chairman and eight new members to the Council of the National Council for Special Education (NCSE)

The Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh T.D. today announced eight new appointments and appointed Joe Hayes chairman to the National Council for Special Education (NCSE) for 2019-2022.

The Education of Persons with Special Educational Needs (EPSEN) Act 2004 provides for a 13 member NCSE Council (at least six men and six women), including a chairperson.  All of the appointments are made by the Minister.

Following Joe Hayes’ meeting with the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Education and Skills on 29th January, the Minister has today finalised his appointment as chairman, in accordance with the terms of the Guidelines on Appointments to State Boards.

The Minister also appointed the following eight new members of the Council:

 

  • Peter Archer, Nominee of the Minister for Education and Skills
  • Eamonn Clavin, Nominee of the Minister for Education and Skills
  • Carol Cuffe, Nominee of the Minister for Health
  • Eileen Daly, Nominee of the National Disability Authority
  • Pat Goff, Nominee of the Minister for Education and Skills
  • Dharragh Hunt, Nominee of the National Disability Authority
  • Clodagh Ní Mhaoilchiaráin, Nominee of Gaelscoileanna Teo and An Foras Pátrunachta
  • Deirbhile Nic Craith, Nominee of INTO

 

Anne Tansey, Don Mahon, Áine Lynch and Antoinette Nic Gearailt were re-appointed to the Council by the Minister on 21st December. All four had served one term on the previous Council.

Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh T.D. said:  “The National Council for Special Education plays a hugely important role in planning and coordinating supports for children with special educational and additional care needs.  Through its work with schools the Council focuses on making education a positive experience for some of the most vulnerable children and families in our community. 

“I am grateful to the Council members for their commitment and dedication to this important work and I wish them all well in their vital work overseeing the work of the NCSE over the next four years.

“Joe Hayes brings a wealth of experience, interest and knowledge to the NCSE Council, both personally and from his career in the media and public service.  I am also pleased to see representatives from the Irish language patronage bodies on the NCSE Council for the first time.”

Notes to Editors

 

The National Council for Special Education was established under the Education of Persons with Special Educational Needs (EPSEN) Act, 2004 to improve the delivery of education services to persons with special educational needs arising from disabilities with particular emphasis on children. 

In carrying out its functions under the Act, the Council is required to consult directly with stakeholders as necessary and to establish a formal national consultative forum representative of all the stakeholders.

Further information on the work of the National Council for Special Education is available at www.ncse.ie.

 

The NCSE’s functions include:

 

  • planning and co-ordinating the provision of education for children with special educational needs and ensuring that a continuum of special educational provision is available
  • conducting and carrying out research
  • providing policy advice to the Minister for Education and Skills in relation to special education
  • disseminating information, including best practice, on special education to parents, schools and other interested persons
  • consulting with voluntary bodies to ensure that their knowledge and expertise can inform the development of policy by the Council.

Anne Tansey, Don Mahon, Áine Lynch and Antoinette Nic Gearailt were re-appointed to the Council by the Minister on 21st December. All four had served one term on the previous Council. 

The term of office of the outgoing NCSE Council came to an end on 31st December 2018.  In order to ensure that a quorate Council was in place for the 1st January 2019, it was necessary to make a number of appointments in advance of completion of a selection process under the Public Appointments Service (PAS), which was completed on 23rd January 2019.

 

The NCSE will be composed of the following members:

 

Joe Hayes, Chairperson (Nominee of the Minister for Education & Skills)

Peter Archer (New Appointment – Nominee of the Minister for Education and Skills)

Eamonn Clavin (New appointment – Nominee of the Minister for Education & Skills)

Carol Cuffe (New Appointment –Nominee of the Minister for Health)

Eileen Daly (New appointment –Nominee of the National Disability Authority)

Anne Tansey (Re-appointed – Nominee of the Minister for Education and Skills)

Don Mahon (Re-appointed –Nominee of the Minister for Education and Skills)

Pat Goff (New Appointment – Nominee of the Minister for Education and Skills)

Áine Lynch (Re-appointment – Nominee of the National Primary Parents Association)

Antoinette Nic Gearailt (Re-appointment – Nominee of the Association of Community and Comprehensive Schools)

Dharragh Hunt (New appointment – Nominee of the National Disability Authority)

Clodagh Ní Mhaoilchiaráin (New appointment – Nominee of Gaelscoileanna Teo and An Foras Pátrunachta)

Deirbhile Nic Craith (New appointment – Nominee of INTO)

 

Remuneration

There is no remuneration or fee for the position. Travel and subsistence will be paid at the current public service rates.

 

Appointment of Chairperson

Under the Guidelines on Appointments to State Boards (Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, November 2014), a chairperson may be appointed under the PAS process or outside this process where the "Minister has independently identified a person who is evidently and objectively highly-qualified and capable of effectively discharging the role of Chair of a State Board and who has not otherwise applied through the stateboards.ie process".

In accordance with the terms of the Guidelines on Appointments to State Boards, persons being proposed by Ministers for appointment as chairpersons of state bodies/agencies are required to make themselves available to the appropriate Oireachtas Committee to discuss the approach which they will take to their role as chairperson and their views about the future contribution of the body or board in question.

Chairpersons may be appointed as chairperson designate until the Oireachtas Committee approves the appointment. 

Mr Hayes successfully met with the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Education and Skills on 29th January 2019.

Joe Hayes brings considerable skills to the role both from his previous service as Ambassador in the Diplomatic Service, as member of the previous NCSE Council 2016 -2018 and he has a strong interest in and personal knowledge of education of children and adults with special educational needs.