The Agency welcomed a new Chair at its autumn bi-annual meeting, which took place on 3–4 November.
The Agency Chair heads the Representative Board and the Management Board, which are responsible for strategic decision-making relating to the Agency’s operations. This includes approving multi-annual and annual work programmes, budgets and accounts, thematic work areas and projects.
During the bi-annual meeting, the Board bid farewell to Ms Ana Magraner Gil, who had been Agency Chair since May 2017. During her time as Chair, she played an important part in developing the Agency’s role as an agent for change and in increasing the recognition of the Agency’s work at European and national level. This is particularly evident in the Council of the European Union Recommendation of 22 May 2018, which encourages member states to ‘make effective use’ of the Agency to develop their inclusive education systems. She was also involved in planning for the Agency’s innovative work programme for 2021–2027, which will provide the structure and focus of future Agency activities to support member countries in their efforts to develop their inclusive education systems. The Agency country representatives and staff thank Ms Magraner for her dedication and hard work over the last three years.
The new Agency Chair is Mr Don Mahon. Mr Mahon’s experience includes working in primary and special schools as a teacher and head teacher, and later as a schools inspector. He also serves on the Irish National Council for Special Education and is a former Agency Representative Board member for Ireland. We welcome Mr Mahon to the position of Agency Chair, and look forward to working with him and gaining from his experience and knowledge.