New figures released by the Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI) show a massive increase in student enrolments in Dundalk Institute of Technology at a time when both staff levels and budgets have plummeted. The union has warned of the hugely detrimental effects of cutbacks on the sector.
Between 2008 and 2013, Dundalk IT has lost the equivalent of 28 fulltime lecturers - a decrease of 9.2% - as a result of cutbacks. Meanwhile, student enrolments between 2008 and 2012 grew by 464 or 10.2% with further growth expected when the 2013 figures are available. Between 2008 and 2012, funding for the Institute fell starkly by over €1.5m or 5.6%, and a further funding cut announced in the Budget will have further negative implications.
TUI represents lecturers and research staff in Dundalk IT. Commenting on the figures, TUI Assistant General Secretary Aidan Kenny said:
“Increased student participation at third level should always be welcomed, but we are gravely concerned by the severe effects that cutbacks are having on the quality of experience for students. Put simply, the high quality teaching and learning experience academic staff in Dundalk IT want to deliver has been put at risk due to draconian budget and staff cuts.