Government must set out clear timeline for implementing Cassells Report
Labour Party spokesperson on Education, Senator Aodhán Ó Ríordáin has called on the Government to set out a timeline as to when they will implement recommendations from the Cassells Report into the Future Funding of Higher Education.
Senator Ó Ríordáin said:
“The Government has been sitting on the report carried out by Peter Cassells into the future of higher education funding for months now. Three options were laid on the table, one of which is publicly funded higher education. The onus is on Ministers Bruton and Mitchell O’Connor to get the ball rolling on this extremely important issue.
“We are now one week before the Budget and none the wiser as to what funding model the Government will implement following the Cassells Report.
“As Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael are in stalemate over whether a student loan scheme or publicly funded third level education is the way forward, third level institutions and students will suffer from the lack of certainty surrounding the future of funding.
“We in the Labour Party have made no secret about the fact that we believe it is time for college fees to go. Since the publication of the Cassells Report, we have argued against student loans.
“We know that employers benefit from a well-educated workforce and they should contribute just a little more towards the National Training Fund. The state should contribute a good bit more.
“My generation of students in the 1990s benefitted from Labour’s belief in free education, it is time for a whole new generation to benefit in this way too.
“Labour’s plan for full and equal access to higher education should become a reality in Ireland.”