Staff Picks:

Inside third level

Teachers must come from all sections of society

 

Higher & Further Education News & Views

Minister snubs key education reform plan

Where science meets business

Farmers battle college grant plans

IT Sligo appointment to Higher Education Authority Board

Flying the Galway flag in the US

CIT strike off after last-minute talks

Pupils pit wits against language puzzles

News diary from 1916 in DCU media history collection

Shakespeare scholars to defend the Bard

Students look past recession towards hi-tech horizons

CAO points scramble strategy doesn’t add up

New science chief is all fired up

 

Disability Headlines

Harsh cuts loom for the intellectually disabled but there is a smart option

Where the horses are the healers

Blue is the colour for World Autism Awareness Day

Duffy and soccer stars to saddle up and raise funds for autism

‘Macbeth’ to come to life for audience with sensory impairments

Let us have new MS treatment, plead sufferers

‘Without him my life wouldn’t be the same’

Teenage autism crusader leaves powerful legacy

General Education Stories

Strong differences persist over school patronage

More than 200 teenagers take part in triathlon as part of school year

Four questioned over violent incident at Ennis school

Pick up skills in lifelong learning week

Surge in uptake of higher-level LC maths

Project Maths is not the answer to tough question

Music helps children learn maths

 

Mental Health in the Media

‘Walk In My Shoes’ mental health drive

Lynch to meet group to discuss anti-depressants

Stars step up to support mental health campaign

Can Goldie Hawn make Irish children happier?

Debate on antidepressants needed

Rugby star O’Driscoll urges men to open up

 

Employment Features

50 leading social innovators to participate at Change Nation event

WAM (Willing Able Mentoring) Programme Briefing

Higher & Further Education News & Views

Atlantic Records in £26m link with Oxford University

GAA to build hurling and camogie centre at WIT

How qualified is your lecturer?

Colleges don’t have enough staff with PhDs to qualify as tech universities

Implant research breakthrough at UL

Top marks for UCC’s model student

Campaign by students aims to curb rise in road deaths

Colleges vying for tech university status lack sufficient numbers of suitably qualified staff

Award winning Trinity student is world’s top hacker claims the FBI

Cambridge University apologises over student admissions blunder

Disability Headlines

‘People saw me fall and thought I was drunk’

Mother takes fight for autistic son’s ‘lifeline’ benefit to the Dáil

Families of autistic children to campaign over allowance

Counting the cost of stroke trauma

Probe into top-ups for €150,000 charity chiefs

Youngest in school year more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD

Special needs organisation appeals for host carers

‘Bionic boy’ Calum is home after operation

General Education Stories

CofI schools under threat of exclusion, says Dublin bishop

Homosexual teachers ‘face hostile environment at school’

Schoolchildren can use an iPhone but cannot tie their shoelaces, poll finds

Mastering Mandarin

Modern languages at primary level are crucial

Educate Together to open seven schools

Parents cutting back on costly after-school activities

Students say hola to Spain via video link

Mental Health in the Media

‘Too many’ suicides linked to depression tablets

‘It gives you a lift when you see your work up there’

‘No plan’ for those who want to come off anti-depressants

GAA stars line out for suicide awareness event

Finding the right mental health service for YOUR needs

Anti-depressant drugs – Investigate claimed link to suicides

Warnings that some prescription drugs cause violent thoughts

Woman woke to find she had ‘no emotions’

Schools conference aims to break stigma of suicide

Employment Features

Over 100 new jobs announced in technology companies in Galway and Dublin

Introduction:

Andrew Blair is the Human Resources Manager with Bank of Ireland & a Director of AHEAD. He’s been working in recruitment for 25years. This is his speech from the WAM Leaders Event which took place in Dail Eireann on Wednesday 22nd February 2012.

Introduction to working with disability

I worked in Bank of Ireland Securities Services (BoISS) a satellite company of BoI which employed 450 people at one point (it has since been sold to Northern Trust).

A customer of BoISS approached me to ask for placements for students from Mary Hare School for Deaf. It was only at that point that I realised I had no real knowledge/education on the topic of disability. I also realised that in fact we had no-one with a disability in the organisation. Not only that, no-one ever remembered anyone with a disability applying.

At that time I also met WAM and attended a workshop. I realised that we were potentially missing out on up to 10% of society by (unconsciously) not including people with disabilities. This was at that time (very different to today) when we had high growth; high staff turnover; recruitment plans took us abroad; and cost us a great deal of money and yet we were potentially ignoring potential recruits.

So like all the employers here today we agreed to take people in on placements and our learning really started.

So what did we learn?

  1. There are very real barriers to entry for people with disabilities both conscious & unconscious:
  • Fear/anxieties about legal problems
  • Some recruiters had real issues/unconfident/inexperienced
  • Prejudice may well have existed – easy to find reasons not to support
  • Recruiters; managers; HR staff are powerful gatekeepers and can determine the nature of your organisation through their own assumptions
  1. We realised that for a placement to be successful we (our approach/attitude/knowledge base) had to change and we had to prepare the way:
  • Held education sessions – needed to open minds get issues on the table/Discussed diversity not disability/discussed how will we handle employees (one of us) acquiring a disability?
  • I asked the question “how would you like to be treated if you were disabled in some way”; followed up by “what type of organisation do we want to create and belong to”?  This was the creation of empathy (not sympathy) and was key to persuading manager’s as to the need to get diversity on the agenda and keep it there as a “normal” business practice
  • All students were placed with “positive gatekeepers” who helped prepare their team – mentor was assigned to a key influencer
  • Talked openly about accommodations with the students (and most importantly what not to do!), quite often no accommodations were required.

Benefits to the organisation:

  • Overall attitude shift with regard to diversity in general – eg more part time workers accepted; openness in understanding issues
  • Our core business work had no impossible barrier that could not be reasonably overcome – we were computerised; non manual
  • Education gap on legal issues was addressed with particular regard to holding interviews/creating accessibility
  • Most important though (almost out of nowhere) we starting receiving applications from other people with disabilities!

WAM future

Each of the employers here today is being recognised for being a positive gatekeeper and I applaud each of you for your initiative and professionalism.

Business is about making things happen and that is what WAM does.

For all people trying to get a job in today’s environment no one needs me to state how competitive and tricky it has become.  For those with a disability the barrier to entry is even higher

Therefore it is even more important that all gatekeepers keep diversity on the agenda; and keep providing those opportunities for those that need this valuable start in organisational life

As a Director of AHEAD I wish to thank each of you and as a fellow employer I urge you to keep the faith and continue the good work

Thank you for listening

AB Feb 2012

 

Higher & Further Education News & Views

Smaller third-level colleges face end of public funding

Colleges face performance-related funding cuts

Institutes face high standards process

Education targets – Academic autonomy is essential

Is new General Secretary ready for fire fighting?

Art college appoints head of design

Colleges given six months to spell out their strategic plans

Colleges in race to gain university status

University criteria dismissed by college president

‘Shag’ week survey reveals that seven out of ten students have unprotected sex

Probe finds poor practices in VECs across country

Anatomy of a medical class: minister opens TCD’s €131m institute

Dublin college chief defends policy on Bahrain

Students could afford €10k fees, says UL study

In My Opinion: New kind of technology university will address the needs of society

Reach for the stars with UCD’s elite performance programme

Warning of ‘mediocrity’ if higher education not funded

Higher education funding crisis will ‘damage’ students

VEC has brief discussion on audit

 

Disability Headlines

Parents of young disabled shocked at cuts in services

Parents of children with autism in major fundraiser to expand facilities

Lauren’s video role raises awareness of rare diseases

Valentine, not just the patron saint of romance, but also of epilepsy

Epilepsy still has strong social stigma for sufferers

Work scheme targeted at people with disabilities

Reilly calls autism claims outrageous

Working disabled allowed to draw welfare

Reilly: Humphreys’ autism comments ‘outrageous’

Judo Assist Ireland

Deaf girl held as slave tells court of years of beatings and rape

Man up, Tony

Northern Ministers hear each other’s pain

 

General Education Stories

Parents campaign over cuts to career guidance

Teacher allowances cut ‘would be end of Croke Park reform’

The formula is simple: real change

Kicking exam pressure to touch

Lessons to be learned from case in Clonmel

Nine jailed for failing to send children to school

Irish girls in top 20% of fitness level study

Speed limit outside six schools cut to 30kph

Watch out Ruairi! Cuts to small schools spell big trouble

No method in madness behind school guidance cuts

Parents in Kildare furious as children of gaelscoileanna ignored

Salaries linked to success in education

School principal challenges removal

 

Mental Health in the Media

After years of self-harm, my life has changed so much

Conquering your personal Everest

Acting fast against teenage depression

 

Employment Features

500 college places for jobseekers

Initiatives aim to deliver 100,000 jobs by 2016

Mastercard to create 130 Irish jobs

Recruiters to get paid for placing workers

New IT jobs after US deal welcomed

Staff Picks:

Sports broadcaster Colm Murray’s battle with motor neurone disease, and his determination to contribute to efforts to find a cure.

MND – The Inside Track

 

Higher & Further Education News & Views

Third-level presidents oppose new university

Newspapers cleared of breaching student’s injunction

Over 50,000 apply for college places

Filling out the CAO form – Tick the Box!

University heads deny accusations of elitism

Sugar-coated bacteria may help in fight against cancer, says UCC

Third-level rift as university heads labelled ‘arrogant’

President calls for response to ‘intellectual crisis’ in society

My life started at 39 — when I finally sat my Leaving Cert

UCC withdraws far-right politician’s invitation

 

Disability Headlines

Parents now ‘less tolerant of disabled children in same class’

How An Asperger Syndrome Diagnosis Saved My Marriage

Rehab welcomes reversal of training bonus cuts

Seeing their lives change before your eyes

‘Parliament must rule on disabled man’s death bid’

How a dog’s life can transform others

UK operation may enable Cavan girl (6) walk unaided

Disability rights campaigner joins Labour

 

General Education Stories

Up to 1,600 teachers to retire before changes to pensions

Gaeltacht parents oppose teacher ratio changes in smaller primary schools

Many students cannot add without calculator study shows

Some small rural schools are being put in immediate jeopardy by staffing cuts

Synge Street – where did it all go right?

‘Raise the bar and close the gap’

Students ‘will not be hit by exodus of teachers’

‘Double whammy’ payment to rehired teachers criticised

Dáil protest at staffing plan for smaller schools

Rural schools must take ‘share of burden’

DEIS schools still face cutbacks, admits Quinn

Falling budgets see class resources cut

 

Mental Health in the Media

Powerful voice for mentally ill people

‘The depth of my depression was irrational . . . Give yourself time. Get the support you need’

TDs in calls to reinstate advocacy worker

Suicide crisis – So much more to do

Magic mushrooms ‘could treat depression’

Slow progress on mental health policy criticised

Closure of psychiatric unit ‘set in blood’

Whistleblower who raised concerns over patients’ welfare gets job back

Voluntary mental patient not being held unlawfully

 

Employment Features

77% of jobseekers lie on CV, survey finds

AHEAD in the News:

UCC head’s views are ‘widespread’

Heated argument

 

Staff Picks:

Back to the future – where are they now?

Death of tireless campaigner for the vulnerable

Most influential and finest journalist of last 25 years

The Case for a Four-Day Work Week

The only way is up when you upskill

 

Higher & Further Education News & Views

Entry points for colleges to rise

Seven steps to CAO success

Colleges spend €750k on taxis in two years

Sporting chance beckons in NY

UK academic to head science body

DCU to lead €3.75m science initiative

Irish mathematician cracks immunity code

UCC head rejects criticism from staff over speech

Disabled or disadvantaged?

Jobs boost is reason to go to college

The rule is simple: list CAO courses in order of preference

Help your children in the career process

Are you eligible for a grant or a scholarship?

DARE Application Advice Clinics

 

Disability Headlines

Offering stepping stones to local manufacturing

Race against time to fund ‘bubble’ boy’s life-saving surgery

Life-changing op to help Casey dance after €30,000 raised

Cerebral palsy boy’s assistance dog banned from school

Dental care for disabled kids

I was told I’d never walk again — today I’m aiming for the Olympics

Isolated twins now talking to world thanks to student project

Hospital doesn’t have to revive disabled boy

We’ve got wheels

Hands On

 

General Education Stories

Budding boffins put projects under microscope

Science & Innovation – Embracing change is key

Opposites do not subtract

Science key to future of State – Kenny

Minister calls for review of teacher cuts at disadvantaged schools

Rabbitte leads delegation to lobby Quinn

Prioritise maths in primary school, says NCC report

At-risk school schemes improve learning

Primary school prepares for the worst

Principal offers to buy e-voting machine — for €1

Ruairi Quinn admits DEIS cuts mistake

 

Mental Health in the Media

Suicide agency names ambassador

Senator: Suicide policy not working

Suicide debate highlights mental health

I needed a break from ‘me’

HSE trains groups in suicide prevention

Mental hospital ‘should remain in public hands’

 

Employment Features

Man with a plan to get people ‘back to work’

Bruton says new initiative aims to generate thousands of jobs

Courses encourage jobless into education

Waterford firm to create 250 jobs

 

Staff Picks:

Christmas Medley in Irish Sign Language by Societies of DIT

Action needed to safeguard education

Third-level graduates more likely to find employment

 

Higher & Further Education News & Views

Where to next for the Bailout Generation?

Two Irish universities lead study of rare cancer

‘Too lazy to come to class’

UCD scientists make key finding on eyeless babies

Students juggling work and pleasure to land the top jobs

Third-level scholarships that give athletes a sporting chance

Rising tuition fees force students into sex work, says students’ union

Report on funding crisis ups pressure for third-level fees

Subject choices ‘hit by third-level funding crisis’

 

Disability Headlines

Life-saving ‘Act Fast’ campaign curtailed over cost

North urged to adopt law on welfare reform or miss benefits

Disability cut all Labour’s idea, says Varadkar

Rehab listed as a top not-for-profit organisation with income of €190m

Thanks be to God it was only diabetes

Home visit teaches Kenny harsh reality of budget cuts

 

General Education Stories

Warning of cuts at schools in poorer areas

Minister’s thinking is fatally flawed

Keeper of the Woods

The school around the corner

Women outstrip men in terms of education

Cuts will erode students’ progress, principal warns

Budget has gone after soft targets: The young and vulnerable

Disadvantaged schools set to lose 400 teachers

Teacher turned up for work to learn she was losing job

Kenny hints at funding rowback for some schools

In My Opinion: We must respect human rights of parents who want secular schools

Loss of 40 teachers to double class sizes

Thousands speak out over languages-teaching cuts

Taoiseach defends education cuts

Over 400 teachers to be axed from schools as cuts bite

Stop streaming students, it’s harmful to education – ESRI

Cyber Bullying: The night I heard my 16-year-old tough-guy son sobbing

Extra ‘alleviation’ teachers to assist hardest hit disadvantaged schools

Disadvantaged schools will not be as badly hit

Teachers’ watchdog pushed for 20pc hike to outgoing boss’s salary

Government U-turn on teacher numbers

 

Mental Health in the Media

Double-edged role of alcohol in suicidal talk

Patients face Christmas in lock-up

Suicidal talk must be taken seriously

Mental health patients forced into locked ward

President Higgins: Urged to be a ‘moral advocate’ for mental health services.

Expert: Central hospital facing legal challenges

Lack of staff in mental healthcare posing ‘risk’

Lynch pledges to ‘pursue’ staff crisis

Mad Pride workshop to get the creative juices flowing

 

Employment Features

Government urged to rethink jobs strategy

Five Things You Should Stop Doing in 2012

Two Lists You Should Look at Every Morning