Wednesday, 7 March 2012
Dáil Éireann Debate
67. Deputy Gerald Nash asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will provide a detailed list of any State organisations, including non-commercial statutory bodies, which, since 1 January 2009, appointed a person to the post equivalent to chief executive officer or de facto Accounting Officer to such an office, who was, within 12 months of that appointment a member of the board of that organisation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13563/12]
Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): I can confirm to the Deputy that in the case of both the National Council for Special Education (NCSE) and the Further Education and Training Awards Council (FETAC) that members of the respective Councils were appointed to the position of CEO since 1st January 2009.
In respect of the NCSE the current CEO, Ms. Teresa Griffin, was appointed in March 2011 following her success in a public open competition conducted by the Public Appointments Service in accordance with the code of practice for public sector appointments. Ms. Griffin was a member of the Council immediately prior to her appointment as CEO due to her then position as Principal Officer in the Special Education Division of my Department. Ms. Griffin was not involved in her role as a member of the Council in the CEO selection or appointment process.
With regard to FETAC the current CEO, Dr. Padraig Walsh, was appointed to this position in June 2011. The Deputy should note that Dr. Walsh became CEO of the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland (NQAI) and CEO Designate of the yet to be established amalgamated qualifications and quality assurance body, to be known as the Qualifications and Quality Assurance Authority of Ireland (QQAAI), in October 2010. One of the conditions of his appointment as CEO Designate was that he would also become CEO of FETAC and/or the Higher Education and Training Awards Council (HETAC) should a vacancy arise in either of those positions in advance of the amalgamation.
When Dr Walsh became CEO of HETAC in February 2011, following the resignation of the incumbent, and, in accordance with the Qualifications (Education and Training) Act, 1999, he therefore also became an ex-officio member of the board of FETAC from that time. Therefore Dr Walsh was a member of the Board of FETAC for a period before being appointed CEO of that body. However, this arose because of the forward planning and strategic arrangements put in place in advance of the amalgamation of the existing qualifications and quality assurance bodies.
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