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Primary teachers vote for industrial action 08/03/16

Primary teachers vote for industrial action over promotion ban in schools

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Press Release
Sheila Nunan
General Secretary
Irish National Teachers’ Organisation

Primary teachers vote for industrial action over promotion ban in schools

Members of the INTO have overwhelmingly backed a call from the union’s executive for industrial action in response to the continued ban on promotion in schools and increasing workload for teachers.

Ninety seven per cent voted to stop all involvement with the Department of Education and Skills’ on-going programme of school self-evaluation.

Ballots of primary teachers took place in all of the union’s 157 branches last week. The result was announced today and a directive on non-cooperation will issue to all schools in the coming days.

The INTO is seeking 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 2008 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 teachers in schools.

Speaking today INTO general secretary Sheila Nunan welcomed the overwhelming support of the membership for action to end the eight year ban on promotion in primary schools as intolerable. She said it was clear from the result that teachers have had enough of being expected to run schools without the necessary resources and supports.

“Teachers are not prepared to see the Department continually ramp up requirements and pressures on schools while ignoring a ban on promotion that has devastated school management structures,” she said. “The Department cannot expect schools to endlessly expand the self-evaluation of teaching and learning and take on board the self-evaluation of leadership and management in schools while watching leadership and management structures built up over years being dismantled.”

Ms Nunan said it is simply not possible for schools to continue to innovate, deal with increasing societal problems and meet endless bureaucratic demands without the proper resources. She siad primary teachers were sending a clear message to the Department that enough is enough.

She called on the Department of Education and Skills 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.