Education and Training-Related State Agencies

The Higher Education Authority (HEA) is the statutory planning and development body for higher education and research in Ireland. The HEA has wide advisory powers throughout the third-level education sector. It is also the funding authority for the universities, institutes of technology and designated higher education institutions.

Irish Human Rights and Equality commission
The Equality Authority is an independent body which exists to uphold the Employment Equality Act, 1998 and the Equal Status Act, 2000. These Acts outlaw discrimination in employment, vocational training, advertising, collective agreements and the provision of goods and services.

Solas is national training and employment authority. It aims to promote a more competitive and inclusive knowledge-based economy by enhancing the skills and capabilities of individuals and enterprises.

The Further Education and Training Awards Council (FETAC) is the national awarding body for further education and training in Ireland. FETAC gives people the opportunity to gain recognition for learning in education or training centres, in the work place and in the community.

The Higher Education and Training Awards Council (HETAC) is the qualifications-awarding body for third-level educational and training institutions outside the university sector. HETAC awards qualifications at all levels of higher education and training up to PhD level.

The IEBI facilitates and support the development of Ireland as an International education centre. The IEBI responds to numerous first line enquiries from overseas students interested in the study options available in Ireland. It promotes Irish education overseas via advertising, developing and circulating generic information and by participating at education fairs, seminars and workshops.

The National Adult Literacy Agency (NALA) is an organisation with voluntary status concerned with national co-ordination, training and policy development in adult literacy work in Ireland. It aims to ensure that all adults with literacy difficulties have access to high quality learning opportunities.

The role of the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) is to advise the Minister for Education and Science on curriculum and assessment for early childhood education and for primary and post-primary schools in the Republic of Ireland. The NCCA is committed to improving the quality of education through continuous review of curriculum and assessment provision.

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE) works to improve the delivery of education services to persons with special educational needs arising from disabilities, with particular emphasis on children.

The National Centre for Technology in Education (NCTE) is a Government agency which provides information and advice to other educational agencies on information and communications technology (ICT) in education.

The National Centre for Guidance in Education (NCGE) is an agency of the Department of Education and Science. It supports and develops guidance practice in all areas of education.

The National Disability Authority (NDA) promotes and helps secure the rights of people with disabilities on behalf of the State. The responsibilities of the NDA include policy development, research and advice on standards.

QQI is responsible for establishing and maintaining a framework of qualifications for the further and higher education sector.

Pobal is a not-for-profit company with charitable status that manages programmes on behalf of the Irish Government and the EU. Its mission is to promote social inclusion, reconciliation and equality through integrated social and economic development within communities.

The Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences was established to develop Ireland's research capacity and skills base. IRCHSS operates funding programmes to support research at pre and post-doctoral levels. There are also funding schemes available for research opportunities for members of academic staff.

IRCSET- Embark Initiative
The Embark Initiative is managed by IRCSET- the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology, which was established to promote excellence in research across the sciences, engineering and technology. The Embark Initiative operates a number of research grant schemes.
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