Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2011/2012

Date: 25 April 2012

Venue: Abercorn Suite, King's Hall, Belfast

The meeting opened in public session at 10:02 am.

1. Apologies

There were no apologies.

2. Chair’s Business

  • The Chairperson informed members that he and the Deputy Chairperson met with the Minister prior to his announcement of the Higher Education strategy, Graduating to Success.
  • The Chairperson asked members if they were content to seek the views of DEL staff on the proposed dissolution and transfer of functions of the Department.

Agreed: The Committee agreed to proceed with a staff consultation questionnaire.

3. Minutes of the meeting held on 21 March 2012

Agreed: The minutes of the meeting were agreed.

4. Matters arising

  • The Committee noted a list of matters arising from the previous meeting.

10.11 am Ms Michelle Gildernew joined the meeting

  • The Committee considered a number of documents in relation to the staffing issues at North West Regional College.
    Agreed:
    The Committee agreed to write to the Minister to request further documentation and information regarding the staffing issues at North West Regional College.

10.16 am Mr Barry McElduff joined the meeting

  • The Committee considered a draft motion on the transfer of the functions of the Department for Employment and Learning.
    Agreed:
    The Committee agreed to submit the motion to the Business Office.

5. Departmental Briefing on the Review of Teacher Education

Officials joined the meeting at 10:19 am.

10:22 am Mr Jim Allister joined the meeting

The Committee was briefed by Ms Nuala Kerr, Director of Higher Education, Mrs Patricia McVeigh, Head of Higher Education Policy Branch and Mr Billy Lyttle, Head of Higher Education Finance, on the Review of Teacher Education.

10:28 am Mr Chris Lyttle joined the meeting

The briefing was followed by a question and answer session.

Officials left the meeting at 10:59 am.

Agreed: The Committee agreed to arrange a joint meeting with the Committee for Education, and to forward the Hansard of the briefing session for information.

Agreed: The Committee agreed to write to the Department for further information on the Review consultation responses.

6. Departmental Briefing on the Review of Employment Law

Officials joined the meeting at 11:00 am.

11:01am Mr Sammy Douglas joined the meeting

The Committee was briefed by Mr Colin Jack, Director of Strategy, European and Employment Relations, and Mr Tom Evans, Head of Employment Relations Policy and Legislation Branch, on the Review of Employment Law.

The briefing was followed by a question and answer session.

Officials left the meeting at 12:01 pm.

12:01 pm Mr Jim Allister left the meeting

12:01 pm Mr Fra McCann left the meeting

12:01 pm Mr Pat Ramsey left the meeting

7. Subordinate Legislation

  • The Committee considered SR 2012 No. 136, The Education (Student Loans)(Repayment) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012

Question put and agreed:

 “That the Committee for Employment and Learning has considered SR 2012 No.136, The Education (Student Loans) (Repayment) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012, and has no objection to the rule.”

12:03 pm Mr Fra McCann rejoined the meeting

  • The Committee considered SR 2012 No. 138, The Code of Practice (Time Off for Trade Union Duties and Activities) (Appointed Day)Order (Northern Ireland) 2012

Question put and agreed:

“That the Committee for Employment and Learning has considered SR 2012 No.138, The Code of Practice (Time Off for Trade Union Duties and Activities) (Appointed Day) Order (Northern Ireland) 2012, and has no objection to the rule.”

12:06 pm Mr Jim Allister rejoined the meeting

8. Correspondence

The Committee considered the following items of correspondence:

  • Ministerial correspondence regarding the Executive’s Youth Contract funding
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Departmental response to the Committee’s correspondence following a briefing by the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this response.
  • Departmental update on apprenticeships as at 2 April 2012
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Departmental response to Committee correspondence regarding EU issues strategy and the Employment Relations Division
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to schedule a briefing from Collaborative R&D Support Service at Invest NI.
  • Correspondence from the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists thanking the Committee for raising vacancy control issues in speech and language therapy with the Minister
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Correspondence from the Committee for Finance and Personnel regarding budgetary issues on the abolition of the Department for Employment and Learning
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Correspondence from Ulster Supported Employment Ltd (USEL) regarding the future of the Department for Employment and Learning
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Correspondence from the Committee for Justice on the Draft Community Safety Strategy
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to draft a response to this strategy for consideration at its next meeting.

12:07 pm Mr Chris Lyttle left the meeting

  • Correspondence from the Bytes Project requesting to meet the Committee to discuss the success of their young people Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEETs) project
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to schedule a meeting.
  • Correspondence from the Committee for the Office of the First Minister and deputy First Minister on the Department for Employment and Learning Investment Strategy update for March 2012
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Correspondence from Condition Management Programme requesting to brief the Committee on their work with people in receipt of Employment Support Allowance who suffer from mental and physical problems
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to schedule a briefing.
  • Correspondence from Belfast Metropolitan College advising that the College’s Equality Scheme has been approved by the Equality Commission
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Copy of correspondence from the Northern Ireland Public Service Alliance to the Office of the First Minister and deputy First Minister regarding their consultation on the dissolution of the Department for Employment and Learning
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Correspondence from Committee for the Office of First Minister and deputy First Minister to all statutory Committees detailing the list of stakeholders consulted by the Committee for Employment and Learning on the dissolution of the Department
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Response from the Office of First Minister and deputy First Minister providing information on the Barroso Task-Force Thematic Sub-Groups
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to request a briefing on this issue.
  • Correspondence from the Committee for Health, Social Services and Public Safety requesting an update from the Department for Employment and Learning on the issues of suicide and self-harm as part of the ‘Protect Life’ Strategy
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to forward the correspondence to the Department for information and comment.
  • Correspondence from Queen’s University Belfast providing additional information requested by the Committee at its meeting on 14 March 2012
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to note this correspondence.
  • Correspondence from the Training for Women Network regarding European Social Funding
    Agreed: The Committee agreed to schedule a briefing.

The Committee also noted an invitation to attend a Barnardo’s seminar to explore the potential of building a Community School Strategy for Northern Ireland.

9. Draft Forward Work Programme

The Committee considered the draft Forward Work Programme up to 13 June 2012.

Agreed: The Committee agreed that it was content to schedule these briefings.

12:09 pm Mr Chris Lyttle rejoined the meeting

10. Any Other Business

Mr Sammy Douglas commended Queen’s University Belfast Volunteering Strategy and commented on how well it was working.

11. Date, time and place of next meeting

Agreed: The Committee agreed that the next meeting should be held on Wednesday, 2 May 2012, at 10.00 am in Room 29, Parliament Buildings.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 12:12pm.

Mr Basil McCrea
Chairperson, Committee for Employment & Learning

2 May 2012

Find Your MLA

tools-map.png

Locate your local MLA

Find MLA

News and Media Centre

tools-media.png

Read press releases, watch live and archived video

Find out more

Follow the Assembly

tools-social.png

Keep up to date with what’s happening at the Assem

Find out more

Contact information

tools-newsletter.png

Contact us for further information about our work.

Contact us