This year’s IASTA Conference was held in the Kilmurry Lodge Hotel in Limerick last Saturday, 7th March 2015. The conference was entitled “Towards a New Agricultural Science Syllabus” and proceedings were opened by Mr. Mattie Kilroy.
Ultimately today’s conference was an opportunity for Agricultural Science teachers to have their collective voice heard and to give their opinion on the content of the proposed NCCA New Syllabus. A record number of teachers (over 100) attended the conference, at their own expense and time, and every corner of the country was represented. Over an intensive five hours, the teachers discussed the composition of a number of topics on the curriculum – ranging from Soils, Animal physiology, Plant physiology, Animal Production, Crop Production, Ecology, Microbiology, Genetics and the Practical Component. There was a lot of positive feedback from attendees, with much debate and discussion about how the syllabus should and could be improved since its first introduction in 1969.
Liam Coyle was elected to represent IASTA on the NCCA Syllabus Committee, after an extremely tight contest. Liam teaches at Scariff Community College in Co Clare and has over thirty years of teaching experience.
Following the conference, the assocation AGM was held and the IASTA officers were elected. George Dennis, although reluctant, agreed to accept the position of chairperson.
The following National Executive positions were filled:
- Chairperson: George Dennis, Kilorglin Comuunity College, Co Kerry (Retired)
- Vice Chairperson: Pat Curtin, Colaiste Mhuire, Buttevant, Co Cork
- Secretary: Ross O’Donovan, Copsewood, Salesian College, Pallaskenry, Co. Limerick
- Assistant Secretary: Louise Gallagher, CBS, Roscommon Town
- Treasurer: Stephanie Flannery, Our Ladys School, Terenure, Dublin 6W
- Assistant Treasurer: Jenny Behan, St Fintans High School, Sutton, Co Dublin
- ASA representative: Elma Nolan, Colaiste Brid, Carnew
- Webmaster: Humphrey Jones, St Columba’s College, Dublin
We would love to hear what you thought of the conference – please use the comment section below to share your experiences of the day.