Present: Mr D Kennedy (Chairman)
Mr S Wilson (Deputy Chairman)
Mrs E Bell
Mr T Benson
Mr T Gallagher
Mrs P Lewsley
Mr B McElduff
Mr G McHugh
Mr K Robinson

Apologies:Mr O Gibson

In Attendance: Mrs G Ardis Miss J Adair
Mrs C Darrah Ms C Angelone

The Committee met at 10.40 a.m.

1. Minutes of Meetings of 28 September 2000 at 12.15 p.m. and 2.15 p.m.

The minutes of the meetings of 28 September 2000 at 12.15 p.m. and 2.15 p.m. were agreed.


2. Matters Arising from the Minutes of Proceedings

  1. The Chairman advised that, following the close of the Committee meeting, representatives of the Joint Negotiating Council would be coming along to discuss the payment of a retainer fee to term-time representatives and invited members to attend the meeting if they were available.
  2. The Chairman informed members that copies of the Committee's response to the Health Committee's inquiry into residential and secure accommodation for Children in Northern Ireland had been circulated.
  3. The Chairman advised the Committee that copies of the agreed response to the CCEA Curriculum Review proposals had been circulated and would be published along with the memorandum from the CCEA and the Minutes of Evidence. He reminded members that the response would not be in the public domain until the report was published.
  4. Arrangements were in hand for a meeting with the New Opportunities Fund.
  5. Copies of the Chairman's letter to the Minister for Education regarding an early meeting to discuss the consultation process following the launch of the Gallagher Report had been circulated. The Minister had replied and copies of his response had also been circulated.

    The Chairman advised members that the Minister would meet with the Committee on Thursday 12 October at 10.30 a.m. to discuss the consultation process. The Minister had also requested nominations from the Committee of suitable individuals for the Review Body.

    Members agreed that each grouping within the Committee would provide a single nomination to the Clerk by 5.00 p.m. on Monday 9 October 2000 and that the Clerk would draw up a composite list for the next Committee meeting.

Mr Robinson joined the meeting at 10.46 a.m.


3. Discussion of the Consultation Paper on School Performance Tables

The Chairman advised members that the Minister for Education had written seeking the Committee's initial views on the format and content of the consultation paper on the published School Performance Tables. Copies of the consultation paper had been circulated.

Following discussion, members agreed that the Clerk would draft a response based on members' comments. Background briefing was also circulated to aid members' consideration of the substantive issues.

Mrs Bell joined the meeting at 11.20 a.m.


4. October Work Programme

A draft October work programme highlighting the key issues had been circulated. Members discussed the possible issues arising over the next month including the key role the Committee intended to play in the consultation process following the launch of the Gallagher Report.


5. Chairman's Business

  1. The Chairman reminded members that the closing date for tabling Oral Questions for the Minister for Education was Tuesday 10 October 2000.
  2. Copies of Press Releases issued by the Department of Education were circulated.


6. Discussion of the Committee's response to the Department of Education's Comprehensive Spending Review proposals

The Chairman advised members that a draft Committee response based on comments from members had been circulated. Following a discussion on the issues, members considered the draft response in detail and agreed the response.


7. Date of Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Committee will be held on Thursday 12 October at 10.15 a.m. in Room 135, Parliament Buildings.


The meeting closed at 12.05 p.m.

Committee Chairman
October 2000

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