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ASTI: 'Schools are being run on a shoe-string and teachers have had enough'

The General Secretary Pat King said if teachers vote no to the Haddington deal then industrial action will continue.

Image: Photocall Ireland

THE GENERAL SECRETARY of The Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland (ASTI) Pat King said today that teachers have experienced years of cuts and “have had enough”.

Yesterday, at a meeting of the union’s executive council they recommended that its members vote no to the Haddington Road proposals.

Vote

It was also decided that a vote be held on the matter.

Speaking on RTE’s This Week radio programme, King said that the Central Executive Council has considered the Haddington Road proposals and have decided to recommend a no vote to its members.

He added that if members do vote no, then industrial action by the union would continue.

King said: “The important thing is that teachers get to decide.”

The new Haddington Road proposals relate to supervision and substitution, the employment conditions of part-time and temporary teachers, the reform of the Junior Cycle, posts of responsibility and the use of additional working hours.

Not sufficient enough

King said that they had met with the department and changes were made, but he said the executive council decided they were “not sufficient enough”.  He said the negotiations he had with the department were as far as he could push it, stating:

“It was the best possible outcome we could get under the current industrial action.”

He added that following years of pay cuts and reduced numbers, teachers’ morale is low. “That is a fact, and the executive reflects that,” he said.

Decision

“I can’t prejudge what members will do, members will make their own decision,” said King.

When asked if the industrial action was mainly centered around pay, he said no, adding that it would be “very nice” if pay cuts were reversed, but said “I don’t think that is going to happen”.

He concluded:

Schools are being run on a shoe-string and teachers have had enough.

Read: ASTI recommends members reject Haddington Road deal>

Read: Quinn “hopeful” for progress in ASTI dispute as areas of discussion identified>

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