The Teaching Council Act, 2001, states that the Council shall “review the standards of education and training appropriate to a person entering a programme of teacher education … and shall advise the Minister and, as it considers appropriate, the institutions concerned”.
A consultation document on entry requirements was published in 2012, setting out proposed revised minimum entry requirements, as well as the suggested timeframe for introduction of these revised requirements. The Council held meetings with key stakeholders, including principals’ bodies, school management bodies, Higher Education Institutions, teacher unions, mentors, student teachers and newly qualified teachers, to present its proposals and hear feedback in relation to same. The Council also invited written feedback in the form of an online survey. The survey closed in Spring 2013 and, following an analysis of all feedback, it was noted that many of the issues raised in the consultation were exceptionally complex and required further research to be carried out so that the Council might provide clear and evidence-informed advice to the Minister.
The ESRI was subsequently commissioned to carry out the research, the final report of which is available here (published 10 November 2016). These findings informed the Council’s deliberations and advice. This advice has been submitted to the Department of Education and Skills, who will make the final decision on the matter.