Public Consultation on Exchequer-Employer Investment

Public Consultation on Exchequer-Employer investment mechanism for HE and FET

The 2016 report of the Expert Group on Future Funding of Higher Education “Investing in National Ambition: A Strategy for Funding Higher Education” concluded that employers are major beneficiaries of the outcomes of higher education and recommended the introduction of a structured contribution from employers as a core element of future funding for higher education.  A copy of the Expert Group report is available: Investing in National Ambition: A Strategy for Funding Higher Education

In order to deliver on this ambition, the Minister for Education and Skills and the Minister for Public Expenditure Reform have agreed that a proposed increase in the National Training Fund should be considered in relation to the funding needs of both the higher education and further education and training sectors. 

The aims are to deliver a skilled and educated workforce to employers, to maintain and to strengthen the economy’s growth potential and deliver benefits to society as a whole.

The Ministers have launched a public consultation process on the proposal following a commitment to do so made as part of Budget 2017.  The joint consultation paper can be viewed here Proposed Exchequer-Employer Investment Mechanism for Higher Education and Further Education and Training.

This consultation process is part of a suite of measures which are intended to develop a sustainable long-term funding model for the higher education and further education and training sectors which will help to drive continued reform, quality and performance improvement: 

  • Increased funding for higher education of €160 million was announced in Budget 2017.
  • The Oireachtas Committee on Education and Skills is currently considering the Expert report including hearing the views of key stakeholders.
  • The Department of Education and Skills is progressing work on the technical aspects of any potential student loan scheme.
  • A review is being conducted by an independent expert panel of the current higher education funding allocation model. The panel is expected to present interim findings by the end of April 2017.

A total of 28 written submissions were received in response to the  joint consultation paper.Submissions can be viewed here.