As we head for a general election in Ireland, some time between now and whenever the Greens think is a good idea, speculation has started to build on who might be the next Minister for Education. The general assumption right now is that the next government will be a Fine Gael/Labour coalition, and if so I supopose it could be either Ruairi Quinn for Labour, or Brian Hayes for Fine Gael (as the latter has somewhat recovered his position in the party after his support for Richard Bruton to replace Enda Kenny as Leader).. But actually I’m going to predict it will be Deirdre Clune, Fine Gael. You read it here first.
If Fianna Fail, contrary to most people’s expectations, is still in government, I predict the Minister for education will be a re-run, and will Noel Dempsey.
You could of course have fun and suggest names from Sinn Fein, or maybe Healy Rae’s son.
Maybe others have their own suggestions.
But as I have mentioned before, my real hope is that higher education will be split off from the Department of Education. As long as we are in competition with schools, we’ll always lose in the distribution of resources, and we’ll always be the first to be cut and will be cut hardest. That’s a fact of life.