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Teachers to share roles between secondary schools to help tackle shortages

The scheme aims to solve recruitment problems in subjects such as STEM, modern languages, Irish and home economics.

Minister for Education Joe McHugh and Minister of State for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O'Connor.
Minister for Education Joe McHugh and Minister of State for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O'Connor.
Image: PA Wire/PA Images

THE DEPARTMENT OF Education has announced measures to tackle teacher shortages by hiring for roles that would be shared between secondary schools.

The scheme will allow two schools to recruit a teacher for a job and employ them on more hours than if they were teaching in just one school.

The aim is to solve recruitment problems in priority subjects such as STEM, modern languages, Irish and home economics.

“It will optimise the use of teaching time. It will allow a teacher to teach as many hours as possible in a high-demand subject,” Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh said.

The scheme will start with the 2019/20 school year and will be reviewed after a year.

Minister McHugh said that this “new approach to filling posts is a solution for principals who are seeking teachers and graduates who are looking for full-time employment and more options for work”.

The scheme is part of the Action Plan for Teacher Supply; McHugh said solving the supply issue was a “national priority”.

Principals and the boards of management in schools should seize this opportunity to work with a neighbouring school by sharing a teacher in a specialist subject.

“With all the progress in our post-primary education system, the growing number of young people in post-primary and new initiatives like Leaving Cert PE and computer science, we need to focus on new ways of working.

“I urge schools to see this as an opportunity and begin the groundwork to make the most of this new scheme.”

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