Welcoming the new Irish education minister

The new Minister for Education and Skills is Ruairi Quinn. I have know him for some time, and remember debating industrial relations law with him when he was Minister for Labour in the 1980s. I regard him as a good choice for the education portfolio, in which he has both experience and an established interest.

As I would see it at any rate, he made a serious tactical error in signing a Union of Students in Ireland pledge on tuition fees during the election campaign, but apart from that his approach to education has been consistently well thought out. He will certainly be less inclined than other politicians to base his higher education policies on anecdotes and prejudices.

I wish him well in his new role.

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5 Comments on “Welcoming the new Irish education minister”


  1. It is also heartening to see that the Minister for Communications is Pat Rabbitte, a colleague and friend of Rúairi’s. At a time where the Communications Department really does need to be working closely with the Department of Education to ensure that high speed broadband is the norm in every school in Ireland, this connection (if you excuse the pun) certainly gives me hope!

  2. Al Says:

    Best of luck to him.
    He has been proved himself.
    Hopefully good work can be done in his term.

  3. John Says:

    This ministry could be a poison chalice for him.

    Universities are underfunded, the exchequer broke, and the new minister is the “old” minister who abolished fees in the first place.

    On a wider point, Kenny seems to be pitting Labour against interests in their own backyard. Quinn’s got education to sort out, Burton’s got social welfare and Howlin’s got public sector reform.

    Schadenfreude anyone?


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