Deferral a major relief for hundreds of students.

31 January 2019

Labour TD Willie Penrose has welcomed today’s announcement from Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor that changes to the minimum entry requirements for the Professional Master of Education (PME) for primary teaching will not now come into effect until September 2020.

Deputy Penrose said: 

“I am delighted to receive the news that Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connell has listened to, and appreciated the seriousness, of the concerns that I raised in the Dail on December 19th, 2018, and has decided to defer the introduction of changes to the minimum entry grades in Irish, English, and Maths for entry to primary teacher education programmes until September 2020. At that stage everybody involved will be quite aware of the new minimum entry requirements and they can take steps to achieve the same.

“I, along with my Labour college Deputies Sean Sherlock, and Brendan Ryan had made strong representations on the issue. The changes to requirements would have placed that a sizable cohort of students who completed their Leaving Certificate prior to September-October 2017 would have been severely disadvantaged and indeed discommoded if these requirements were not deferred.

“While the changes are welcome, deferring their introduction will give great relief to hundreds of graduates around the country who were concerned, having already worked hard to secure their primary degree and now wish to pursue the Professional Masters of Education (PME) degree for Primary Education.

“I am glad the Minister took the constructive criticism and concerns of the Labour Party onboard. I am assured and delighted that the deferral has been achieved, and the Minister has shown she listened carefully to reasoned argument. The deferral will certainly give great relief to hundreds of students around the country.

“I am proud that mine and my colleague’s representations on this issue have resulted in today announcements.”

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