• The ASTI has advised its members to engage with the calculated grades system for this year's Leaving Cert.

    The union's resolved a dispute with the Department of Education over legal protection for teachers.

    The calculated grades system for this year's Leaving Cert has been in doubt since last night, when the ASTI said it wouldn't engage with the model.

    They had concerns the state indemnity being offered didn't go far enough - and wanted a guarantee that if a student took a claim, 100 per cent of the legal costs would be covered.

    A meeting has been taking place between union and department officials this afternoon - and the ASTI now says it's secured the necessary clarifications.

    It's been assured that if a student unhappy with their grade sues, no teacher will have to employ their own legal team to defend themselves and run the risk of racking up large expenses.

    The ASTI says it's now in a position to advise members to engage with the calculated grades system for this year's Leaving Cert.

  • There are a number of issues surrounding the plans for this year's Leaving Cert students that need to be clarified by the Department of Education in the coming days.


    That's according to the Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland, who says they have a number of questions that still need a definitive response from the Department - such as the marking plans for students that take a subject outside of school.


    It was confirmed last Friday that grades calculated by teachers would replace the traditional exams, and teaching unions and school managers have called for safeguards to protect teachers from being canvassed by students or parents.


    Diarmiad de Paor, Deputy General Secretary of the ASTI, told Midwest News this evening that there's a lot of pressure on teachers, and a number of concerns regarding the plans for this year's Leaving Cert students....

  • As the three teachers unions meet this week for their annual conferences, an internal report has shown that membership of the country’s biggest secondary teachers’ union has fallen to its lowest level in 15 years.

    The drop occurred last year during a dispute between the ASTI and Government, which triggered pay losses for thousands of members.

    The report shows ASTI membership fell by almost 2,000 last year to 16,440 – a 10% decrease.

    The West Mayo branch saw membership fall by 16%, with a 23% drop in Tuam and an 18% reduction in the East Galway branch.

    Meanwhile, 70 thousand teachers could go on strike this September if significant progress is not made on the restoration of pay.

    Over 20 thousand teachers are on a lower pay scale since cuts were introduced in 2011, and unions want the pay inequality reversed.

  • Schools will be required to consult with parents and pupils on the use of Smart Phones in Schools.

    The Education Minister will send out a circular to all schools immediately telling them smart phones are an item requiring consultation with teachers, parents and pupils.

    That includes what devices are allowed and if they can be used for photos and videos and if age restrictions will apply to younger pupils.

    However, a spokesperson for the Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland said most schools already have rules on smart phones, and said a blanket ban wouldn't work.



  • The ASTI says it won't lie down until secondary school teachers get equal pay for equal work.


    The union's planning to put its 17 thousand members to a ballot on whether or not to strike.


    They're unhappy that some new entrant teachers have less pay even though they're doing the same work as their colleagues.


    ASTI President Deirdre MacDonald says it's not good enough: