Updated parent’s leave Circular

The Department of Education has published Circular 0050/2022, which updates the terms of the parent’s leave scheme for teachers. The INTO is extremely disappointed that members who have made sufficient PRSI contributions, and who are eligible for parent’s benefit, will not have their salaries topped up by the DE while availing of parent’s leave.

The key provisions of the Circular include:

  • An additional two weeks of leave is available to both parents of children born or adopted on or after 1 July 2020.
  • The leave must be taken within the first two years after birth, or within the first two years of the placement of the child in the case of adoption.
  • The leave may be taken as continuous period of seven weeks (49 consecutive days), seven instances of one-week blocks, or any combination, subject to a combined total of seven weeks.
  • A 12-week extension may be facilitated for parent’s leave applications which have a commencement date in August 2022. This is an exceptional arrangement, due to the publication date of the amended legislation. An employer may also choose to waive the six-week notice period which is usually required for parent’s leave, in which case the 12-week extension will not be necessary.

INTO General Secretary John Boyle, while welcoming the additional two weeks of leave, challenged the position taken by the Government and stated:

It has been clear for some time that other EU member states aim to replace income to a greater extent than Ireland. The INTO feels strongly that if this Government was really serious about supporting working families, this statutory leave entitlement would be fully paid in the public sector in line with other statutory paid leave schemes, such as maternity leave, paternity leave, and sick leave.”