Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Education Thomas Byrne TD says the latest global university rankings show that the Government’s current approach to higher education is failing.

The global rankings show that there is no Irish university in the world’s top 100. Six out of eight Irish top-ranked colleges have fallen down the rankings while Trinity College Dublin lost its ranking as Ireland’s only top-100 university, falling from 88th to 104th in the world.

Deputy Byrne said, “These results are disappointing and mark a sustained downward trend for Ireland’s universities on the global stage. These rankings are an established method of measuring the reputation of third level institutions internationally. They by no means tell the complete picture but Minister Bruton’s decision to basically ignore them is negligent and delusional and suggests he does not truly understand the difficulties facing Irish third level institutions.

“Minister Bruton has shown little interest in wanting to tackle the challenges facing third level education. Senior academics have expressed alarm at the difficulties facing third level education yet their concerns have fallen on deaf ears for years now.

“Minister Bruton needs to publish a detailed plan setting out how the Government intends getting Ireland back up in the global rankings. The current inertia surrounding third level education policy is unsustainable and is only serving to undermine Irish universities,” concluded Deputy Byrne.