Memoir

Upstart

Friends, Foes & Founding a University

Memoir published by The Collins Press, 2011

Paris Agreement: €30bn Cost for Ireland.

The Paris Agreement will cost Ireland more than €30bn. Although the Attorney General advised the Government that it is necessary to have an indication of the overall costs of complying with the Paris Agreement on climate change prior to Oireacthtas ratification… Continue reading

Making Ireland Great Again: or at least a bit better

Larger budgets are frequently demanded by public institutions as a prerequisite for development and reform. Yet in many cases much can be achieved without any additional funding, and sometimes with less, provided leadership has the courage to shake things up, … Continue reading

Public Pay and Health: daunting challenges for government

By 2000 Ireland had become the fourth most competitive country in the world[1].  Growing at 11 percent, the economy was the most successful in the EU[2]. There was full employment[3].  The budget was in … Continue reading

Electoral Reform

On 26 October 1989, just 17 days after the Berlin wall fell, I was in Estonia’s second city, Tartu, as guest of the Communist Party. I was there as president of the University of Limerick, at the suggestion of the … Continue reading

Teacher unions frustrate reform of Irish education

Over the years the Irish teacher unions have demonstrated a remarkable ability to improve pay and conditions for their members. Periodic threats of industrial action, backed up with the possibility of an escalation to the ‘nuclear option’ (refusing to mark … Continue reading

Irish Health System Reform: reallocation to the front line

Ed Walsh                                                                             … Continue reading

Reforming Irish University Governance

Background
Once most of the world’s best universities were in Europe
• Governing board members drawn from within
• Many board members
• Rectors and Deans elected
Now they are in the US
• Governing board composed of external members … Continue reading

School-based Assessment: Deemphasising the Leaving Certificate

Ed Walsh

The startling rate at which the Irish school system is falling behind was highlighted in last December’s OECD’s PISA report
• In a decade reading levels in Ireland have dropped from 5th to 17th.
• 23 per cent … Continue reading

Reforming Irish Education

Ed Walsh

The Celtic Tiger success of the 1990s was built on high-tech manufacturing. While this is still important for Ireland there has been a steady shift in activity and job creation towards knowledge-base service enterprise. Products, rather than being … Continue reading

13 Steps to Reform Irish Education

1. Secularise and reform the education of primary teachers: more civics, science, math and modern languages.
2. Limit places in teacher education, making it an elite profession from which all but the most suitable are excluded
3. Upgrade the performance … Continue reading