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The Council comprises these 37 members:

  • 11 primary teachers, nine of whom are elected and two of whom are teacher union nominees
  • 11 post-primary teachers, seven of whom are elected and four of whom are teacher union nominees
  • 2 nominated by colleges of education
  • 2 nominated by specified third-level bodies
  • 4 nominated by school management (two primary and two post-primary)
  • 2 nominated by parents’ associations (one primary and one post-primary)
  • 5 nominated by the Minister for Education, including one representing each of IBEC and ICTU.

Council Members

Appointment of members to the Teaching Council

The Council has 37 members of whom 16 of these are registered teachers who are elected by teachers, 16 are nominated by various bodies specified in the Teaching Council Acts, 2001-2015, and five are nominated by the Minister. All 37 are appointed by the Minister.

The members of the Teaching Council are:

Members of the Teaching Council

  • Adrian Guinan

    Elected - Voluntary - Post-Primary - Midlands-North

  • Adrieanne Healy

    Elected - Post-primary - Voluntary - Dublin and South

  • Aileen Horkan

    Elected - Primary - Connaught/Ulster

  • Áine Lynch

    Nominee - Primary - NPC

  • Anne Loughnane

    Nominee - ASTI

  • Bryan O'Reilly

    Nominee - CPSMA

  • Catherine Moynihan

    Nominee - JMB

  • Catherine Cross

    Nominee - NPC

  • Claire Ní Mharcaigh

    Elected - ETB Sector - Dublin and South

  • Clodagh O'Hara

    Elected - Post-primary - Community and Comprehensive Sector - All of Ireland

  • David Fagan

    Elected - Primary - Dublin

  • David O'Sullivan

    Nominee - INTO

  • Declan Fahie

    Nominee - UCD

  • Desmond Cogan

    Elected - Primary - Connaught/Ulster

  • Eamon Dennehy

    Nominee - ASTI

  • Fergal McCarthy

    Nominee - ACCS

  • Gráinne Conachy

    Nominee

  • Hazel O'Connor-McWey

    Elected - Primary - Leinster

  • Jean Beswick Duignan

    Nominee - TUI

  • Joseph McKeown

    Elected - Primary - Leinster

  • Liam Ó Néill

    Ministerial Appointee

  • Liam Doran

    Nominee - Ministerial Appointee

  • Máire Kenefick

    Elected - Primary - Munster

  • Marcella Nic Niallaigh

    Elected - Primary - Dublin

  • Mary Curley

    Elected - Primary - Munster

  • Mary Magner

    Nominee - INTO

  • Neil O'Sullivan

    Nominee - IBEC

  • Niamh Hourigan

    Nominee - MIC

  • Niamh Dennehy

    Nominee - UCC

  • Noel Cronin

    Elected - Post-primary - ETB Sector - Dublin and South

  • Patrick Knightly

    Elected - Post-primary - Voluntary - Dublin and South

  • Paul Moroney

    Elected - Primary - Munster

  • Séamus Ó Fearraigh

    Nominee - TUI

  • Seán Ó hArgáin

    Nominee - Gaeloideachas

  • Teresa O'Doherty

    Nominee - MIE

  • Ursula O'Connor

    Elected - ETB Sector - Midlands-North-West

Council Committees

In order to facilitate its work, the Council has established a number of committees, groups and panels. Details of the functions and membership of each of these are set out below.

The Audit and Risk Committee evaluate the effectiveness of the Teaching Council’s internal control procedures, including the internal audit function.

Responsibilities include:

  1. Financial reporting
  2. Risk management arrangements
  3. The Council’s system of internal control
  4. Internal and external audit functions
  5. Financial reporting
  6. Protected disclosures

The Audit and Risk Committee is composed of the following members:

  • David O’Sullivan (Chairperson)
  • Ursula O’Connor
  • Pat Knightly
  • Seán Ó hArgáin
  • Gráinne Conachy
  • Liam Gallagher

A panel of the Disciplinary Committee will conduct a hearing on a complaint referred to it by the Investigating Committee. This hearing is conducted in accordance with Section 43 and Schedule 3 of the Teaching Council Act, 2001, and the associated rules and procedures which have been drawn up by the Council. Based on the hearing, the panel may make a finding of unfitness to teach, or it may dismiss the application. The panel makes its report to the Disciplinary Committee.

Where a finding of ‘unfitness to teach’ is reached, the Committee applies an appropriate sanction which may involve withdrawal of registration on a temporary or permanent basis or continuing registration subject to a number of conditions.

The Disciplinary Committee is composed of the following members

  • Noel Cronin (Chairperson)
  • Mary Magner
  • Jean Beswick
  • Clodagh O’Hara
  • Máire Kenefick
  • Paul Moroney
  • Adrienne Healy
  • Adrian Guinan
  • Liam Doran
  • Neil O’Sullivan
  • Fergal McCarthy
  • Áine Lynch
  • Declan Fahie

The committee will advise the Council and make recommendations in the following areas:

  • Standards of entry to the teaching profession – The requirements for entry to programmes of initial teacher education in the State.
  • Practice of teaching – The review of standards of knowledge, skills and competence required for the practice of teaching.
  • Teaching qualifications – Including the development of criteria and procedures for review and accreditation.
  • New entrant induction – Matters relating to the induction of new members to the profession.
  • Liaison and consultation with the Registration Committee – in respect of bullets 2, 3 and 4 above.
  • Teachers’ learning (CPD) – the promotion of the professional learning of teachers and the review and accreditation of programmes of professional learning (CPD) in accordance with section 39 (when commenced) of the Acts.
  • Codes of Professional Conduct – The drafting and review of codes of professional conduct for teachers, in collaboration with the Investigating and Disciplinary Committees. The committee will be particularly cognizant of the Council’s obligations under section 7.2. of the Acts.
  • Research – The development, implementation and review of the Council’s research strategy.
  • Approve the use of professional expertise from time to time, to assist the Qualifications Panel and the review and accreditation process.

The committee has also been delegated authority by Council to prepare submissions and reports on educational issues in line with agreed Council policy

The Education Committee is composed of the following members:

  • Claire Markey (Chairperson)
  • Aileen Horkan
  • Adrian Guinan
  • Noel Cronin
  • Máire Kenefick
  • David Fagan
  • Adrienne Healy
  • Gráinne Conachy
  • Liam O’Neill
  • Seán Ó hArgáin
  • Catherine Moynihan
  • Niamh Dennehy
  • Teresa O’Doherty

The Council’s Fit and Proper Assessment Panel assesses the evidence of character of applicants seeking to register as teachers with the Council. It does so in line with guidelines which have been approved by the Council.

Where the Panel decides that an applicant’s evidence of character renders her/him unsuitable for registration purposes, the Panel will notify the applicant of its decision, the reasons for that decision and the courses of action open to the applicant at that point. The Panel then prepares a report for the attention of the Registration Committee.

The Fit and Proper Assessment Panel is composed of the following members:

  • Jean Beswick Duignan (Chairperson)
  • Anne Loughnane
  • Hazel O’Connor McWey
  • Joe McKeown
  • Bryan O’Reilly
  • Niamh Hourigan

The Executive Committee facilitates the efficient and effective functioning of the Council. Its functions are set out in Section 26 of the Teaching Council Acts 2001, as amended. In addition to its legislative functions the Executive Committee have oversight of the promotion of the profession, the Council communication strategy and proposed legislative amendments.

The Executive Committee is composed of the following members:

  • Eamon Dennehy (Chairperson of Council)
  • Mary Curley (Deputy Chairperson of Council)
  • Seamus O Fearraigh
  • David O’Sullivan
  • Claire Markey
  • Mary Magner
  • Anne Loughnane
  • Liam O’Neill
  • Gráinne Conachy
  • Fergal McCarthy
  • Teresa O Doherty

The Finance Committee oversees the Council’s financial affairs including the preparation of the annual budget, the ongoing monitoring of income and expenditure and the Council’s general administrative arrangements.

Its functions include:

  • Reviewing and reporting on the financial affairs of the Council
  • Considering the annual budget
  • Reviewing actual income and expenditure against the budget at regular specified intervals during the annual budget cycle and ensuring a revised budget is prepared where necessary
  • Supervising the disbursement of funds
  • Reviewing and making recommendations with respect to the Council’s fees
  • Liaising with and preparing accounts for the auditors.

The Finance Committee is composed of the following members:

  • Mary Magner (Chairperson)
  • Seamus O Fearraigh
  • Adrian Guinan
  • Marcella Nic Niallaigh
  • Fergal McCarthy
  • Niamh Hourigan

The Council or any person may apply to the Investigating Committee for an inquiry into the fitness to teach of a registered teacher where:

  • The teacher has failed to comply with or has contravened the Teaching Council Act, 2001, the Education Act, 1998, the Education (Welfare) Act, 2000, the VEC Acts, 1930 to 1999, or any regulation, rules or orders made under those Acts
  • The teacher’s behaviour constitutes professional misconduct as defined by the Teaching Council Act, 2001
  • The Teacher’s registration is erroneous due to a false or fraudulent declaration or misrepresentation or
  • She or he is medically unfit to teach.

The Council will not routinely become involved in day-to-day contractual or disciplinary matters, or in hearing complaints which can be more appropriately dealt with at local level.

When it is deemed appropriate to do so, the Committee will refer an application to the Disciplinary Committee.

The Investigating Committee is composed of the following members:

  • Mary Curley (Chairperson)
  • Anne Loughnane
  • Seamus O Fearraigh
  • Ursula O’Connor
  • Joe McKeown
  • Aileen Horkan
  • Pat Knightly
  • Catherine Cross
  • Catherine Moynihan
  • Bryan O’Reilly

The Qualifications Panel is composed of the following members:

  • Adrieanne Healy (Chairperson)
  • Ursula O’Connor
  • Hazel O’Connor McWey
  • Des Cogan
  • Declan Fahie
  • Teresa O’Doherty

The Registration Committee advises the Council and makes recommendations in all areas relating to the registration of teachers by the Council. This work includes advising and making recommendations on:

  • The regulations governing registration
  • The processes for implementing such regulations
  • The process used for the review of panel decisions
  • The composition and terms of reference of Primary and Post-primary Applications Panels and the Evidence of Character Panel
  • The appointment of assessors to assist the Applications Panels and the Review of Decision process
  • Advising the council on the form of certification to be issued
  • Criteria and guidance for the assessment of qualifications for registration purposes
  • Issues relating to Evidence of Character and probation.

In addition, the Registration Committee, acting on behalf of the Council, reviews registration application decisions made by the Primary and Post-primary Applications Panels and the Evidence of Character Panel, where so requested by the applicant. It does this in accordance with the Review of Decision process adopted by the Council.

The Registration Committee is composed of the following members:

  • Anne Loughnane (Chairperson)
  • Patrick Knightly
  • Jean Beswick Duignan
  • Clodagh O’Hara
  • David Fagan
  • Des Cogan
  • Marcella Nic Niallaigh
  • Gráinne Conachy
  • Neil O’Sullivan
  • Seán Ó hArgáin
  • Niamh Dennehy
  • Niamh Hourigan
  • Fergal Mc Carthy

The Registration panel consists of seven members and meet once a month to consider extension request forms submitted by teachers who are seven years or more on the register and who have not addressed their condition(s). The Head of Registration can also refer teachers to the Registration Panel.

The Panel can extend , defer, or refuse to grant an extension of time based on the extension request form the teacher has submitted along with their supporting documentation.

The Registration Panel is composed of the following members:

  • Niamh Dennehy (Chairperson)
  • Seamus O Fearraigh
  • Adrian Guinan
  • Clodagh O’Hara
  • Paul Moroney
  • Gráinne Conachy
  • Mary Magner