Our Conference 2016

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And the magic happened at the School of Nursing in DCU on Saturday 27th February 2016!  Deep discussions, new learning, exchange of activities already tried, even the odd cup of coffee all served to enhance a day that had a wonderfully broad programme on offer.   I would like to take this opportunity to thank all who presented, particularly those who did so for the first time.  Although with friends, it can be nerve racking.  Thanks also to Prof. Brian MacCraith for his opening address and to Mark Brown of the National Institute for Digital Learning (NIDL) for the challenge he put before us, a context for much of the day.  During the morning we introduced a spotlight slot with only two parallel sessions and thanks to Derek Breen and Leigh Graves Wolf for their exciting presentations. To Tim Rylands and Sarah Neild who pushed us to find that child within us – the one who is spontaneous and absorbed by the moment – I would like to say a particular thank you.  It would be remiss of me not to mention the unseen presence of Bianca Ní Ghrógáin, a powerhouse of humanity for whom learning ‘with meaning and magic’ was the very essence of being a teacher.  Her untimely death last summer was a shock to all, not least her parents Pauline and Gerry.  They accepted our invitation to join the CESI crew at conference and at the TeachMeet to learn more about what their daughter was involved in.  It was our pleasure to have them with us.  On behalf of the executive I would like to extend sympathies to family and friends of those quieter members who may have passed away over the year.  May they all rest in peace.

CESI is a voluntary organisation, run by busy people for busy people.  I would like to publicly acknowledge the great work done by the executive in putting together and running the events of the weekend.  I would also like to thank them for the work done during the year to strengthen and continue to develop a community of practice for all involved/interested in education in Ireland in the 21st century.  At our recent AGM a number of members stood down from the executive and I would like to, on behalf of all CESI members, give a cyber ‘bualadh bos’ in recognition of their stalwart work.  They are:  Mags Amond, Helen Bullock, Mark Glynn, Nigel Lane, Anne McMorrough, Pádraig Ó Dubhaigh, Conor Power and Brenda Walsh.

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