Policy Forum for Northern Ireland

We are continuing to organise full-scale virtual conferences which retain all the features of physical seminars, including full programmes, presentations with slides, panel discussions and live delegate questions and comments sessions, person-to-person and group networking, and a permanent record provided to all delegates afterwards. New events are coming on to our conference programme all the time, so there are plenty of opportunities to join us if you haven’t already, from wherever you are.
For booking-related queries or information on speaking please email us at info@forumsupport.co.uk, or call +44 (0)1344 864796.

If you’re already booked on, joining instructions can be accessed from five working days before your conference via the booking dashboard. Need help? You can contact our Delegate Relations team at delegate.relations@forumsupport.co.uk or by calling the above number.

Priorities for tackling educational underachievement in Northern Ireland

Morning, Monday, 11th October 2021


***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***

This conference will examine priorities following the recent report from the Expert Panel on Educational Underachievement, A Fair Start, which outlines a new action plan including 47 areas for improvement.


Delegates will also look at the impact of COVID-19 on the attainment gap and educational underachievement, as well as other relevant developments, such as the Summer Scheme 2021 and the Pathway Fund 2021-2023, with further discussion on the links between socio-economic deprivation and educational underachievement.


The agenda will bring out latest thinking on:

  • key findings from the Expert Panel
  • early learning and development and its role in laying the groundwork for later learning
  • delivering improvements to the curriculum and assessment landscape
  • socio-economic deprivation and educational achievement

We are pleased to be able to include keynote contributions on key issues from:

  • Michelle McIlveen MLA, Minister of Education
  • Dr Noel Purdy, Director of Research and Scholarship, Head of Education Studies, Director of the Centre for Research in Educational Underachievement, Stranmillis University College and Chair, Expert Panel on Educational Underachievement, Department of Education
  • Corrine Latham, Interim Director of Curriculum and Assessment, Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA)

Attendees

Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders. Places have been reserved by officials from the Department for the Economy, NI; DAERA, NI; the Northern Ireland Audit Office; and the Department for Education. Also due to attend are representatives from Action for Children NI; Barnardo's; Carrickfergus Grammar School; Catholic Schools Trustee Service; CCEA; Equality Commission for NI; Extern; Lifestart Foundation; Loyola Marymount University; National Foundation for Educational Research; Queen's University Belfast; Silverstream Primary School, Carrickfergus; St Patrick's College Dungannon; Ulster University; West Belfast Partnership Board; Women Centre Derry; Young at Art; and Young Enterprise NI.


Overall, we expect speakers and attendees to be a senior and informed group including Members of the Northern Ireland Assembly, senior officials from NI Executive Departments and regulators  involved in this area of policy, as well as from schools and colleges; local authorities; consultancies and charities; publishers, awarding bodies, Edtech providers and other suppliers; law firms; research institutes and think-tanks as well as academics, together with reporters from the national and specialist media.


This is a full-scale conference taking place online***

  • full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording and transcript to refer back to
  • information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
  • conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
  • speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
  • opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
  • a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
  • delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
  • networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!

Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference



Keynote Speaker

Michelle McIlveen MLA

Minister of Education

Keynote Speakers

Dr Noel Purdy

Director of Research and Scholarship, Head of Education Studies, Director of the Centre for Research in Educational Underachievement, Stranmillis University College and Chair, Expert Panel on Educational Underachievement, Department of Education

Michelle McIlveen MLA

Minister of Education

Corrine Latham

Interim Director of Curriculum and Assessment, Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA)

Chairs

Robbie Butler MLA

Member, Committee for Education

Pat Sheehan MLA

Deputy Chairperson, Committee for Education

Speakers

Stephen Dallas

Chief Executive Officer, The Bytes Project

Stephen Mullan

Chief Executive, Dreamscheme Northern Ireland

Barry Corr

Principal, Seaview Integrated Primary School, Glenarm

Michael Allen

Principal, Lisneal College, Derry-Londonderry

Alison McNulty

CEO, TinyLife

Dr Laura Firth

Head of Student Experience, Northern Regional College, Ballymena

Dr William Kitchen

Lecturer in Education, STEM, Stranmillis University College

Dr Erin Early

Research Assistant, Centre for Education Policy and Equalising Opportunities, University College London

Rita Moore

Principal, St Mary’s Limavady

Professor Siobhan O’Neill

Mental Health Champion for Northern Ireland

Micheál Mac Giolla Ghunna

Principal, Coláiste Feirste

Dr Mairead Tracey

Teacher, Broadbridge Primary School, Londonderry

Cllr Connie Egan

Member, Community and Wellbeing Committee, Ards and North Down Borough Council