Ban on promotion in schools 11/01/16
INTO to ballot primary teachers on industrial action over promotion ban
Monday, 11 January 2016
Irish National Teachers’ Organisation
INTO to ballot primary teachers on industrial action over promotion ban.
The INTO is to ballot its 33,000 members on industrial action next month in response to the continued ban on promotion in schools and increasing workload for teachers.
The decision to ballot was finalised at a meeting of the union’s executive at the weekend.
The ballot will ask teachers to stop all involvement with the Department of Education and Skills’ on-going programme of school self-evaluation.
The INTO is calling for an end to the ban on promotions in primary schools and the re-instatement of promoted posts lost in the last eight years. The ban was introduced in 2009 and has led to the loss of thousands of promotions in primary schools. This has severely hit the career prospects of unpromoted teachers and has increased the work burden on those in promoted posts.
Speaking today INTO general secretary Sheila Nunan described the eight year ban on promotion in primary schools as intolerable. She said it was having a severe impact and compromising the running of schools.
“In modern schools leadership must be shared,” said Ms Nunan. “There is more administration and bureaucracy than ever. Meeting increased demand from parents, pupils and the Department cannot be done without the necessary resources such as a leadership team of promoted teachers.”
The union said it had noted plans by the Department to ramp up requirements for schools in the self-evaluation of teaching and learning and to introduce self-evaluation of leadership and management in schools.
INTO is also conducting an updated survey of schools to assess the local and regional impact of the moratorium on promotion, and will use the results in its campaign to end the ban.
Ms Nunan said the ban on promotion is severely limiting the capacity of an increasing number of schools to engage with the process at present. She also said the introduction of new language curriculum into primary schools would mean it will not be possible for schools to extend their involvement in school self-evaluation at this time. She called on the Department of Education to respond positively to the INTO’s demand for a lifting of the moratorium on posts of responsibility in schools and co-operate in alleviating workload in schools.
Recently completed research by the union shows significantly increased workload stress in primary teaching. This research identifies as stressors demands by inspectors, increased paperwork requirements and the continued moratorium on promotion in primary schools. The INTO said such findings required a response in order to protect the health, safety and welfare of teachers in their workplaces.