Second level teachers, members of the ASTI, voted yesterday for industrial action because of concerns arising from the Covid-19 pandemic, yet the General Secretary of the ASTI insists teachers want schools to remain open.

Rapid Covid testing in schools, better arrangements for teachers who are deemed “high risk”, and adequate equipment for students and staff to learn online if necessary, are among the issues teachers have raised.

Labour education spokesperson, Aodhan O'Riordain said today that the Minister for Education Norma Foley needs to urgently take steps to address these concerns.

Moira Keys is the General Secretary of the ASTI, she told Midwest News today that while the vote for industrial action acts as a strong bargaining tool in discussions with the department of Education, it does not mean that teachers are about to go on strike.

Rather she insists teachers want schools to remain open.

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