Second Level - Maternity Leave


Click here to download the revised maternity leave circular - February 2013

Maternity leave will consist of 26 consecutive weeks on full pay less any social welfare allowance payable on foot of an employee’s social insurance. This paid leave is available to all permanent whole-time employees and to temporary whole-time and pro-rata employees.

An employee who intends going on maternity leave should submit, through the management authority of her school, a medical certificate confirming pregnancy and stating the expected week of confinement. The certificate must be submitted 4 weeks before she intends to go on maternity leave. A minimum period of maternity leave must be taken, beginning not later than two weeks before the end of the expected week of confinement, and ending not earlier than four weeks after the end of the expected week of confinement.

At the end of maternity leave, an employee will be given the option of:
(a) up to 16 additional weeks without pay, or
(b) leave of absence without pay, to the end of the academic year, subject to discretion of the managerial authority concerned. (For this purpose the end of the school year is the end of August.)

Changes to time in lieu arrangements
Following Budget 2013, arrangements for maternity and adoptive leave-in-lieu (up to 30 days) that currently apply to teachers are to be ended. Any days in lieu accumulated up to April 30th 2013 will be granted in the normal manner but from May1st 2013 onwards, no additional days in lieu will be accrued. The statutory 26 weeks paid maternity leave (24 weeks paid adoptive leave) and the 16 weeks unpaid leave that applies to all workers is unaffected.
This is a cross-union issue and TUI is engaging with the other teachers unions as a matter of urgency. TUI will work to ensure that women teachers are no worse off with regard to maternity leave than women in other public service posts.


The sequencing arrangement for maternity leave are:

  • Maternity leave (first 26 weeks – statutory leave)
  • Additional unpaid maternity leave (maximum 16 weeks – statutory leave)
  • Leave in lieu (under approved Maternity Leave scheme ) in respect of first 26 weeks
  • Additional leave in lieu in respect of unpaid statutory maternity leave

Time off may be allowed for attendance at ante-natal and post-natal clinics. Evidence of appointment or attendance at the clinic will be required by the school authority.
Maternity leave will be granted irrespective of an employee’s sick leave record and will not reckon as sick leave. Sick leave following maternity leave will be allowed only if the school authority is satisfied that the employee intends to return to her position when fit to do so.

A teacher/lecturer on maternity leave will be paid full salary by the Department of Education provided she:

(i) signs a mandate authorising the Department of Social & Family Affairs to pay any benefits due directly to the Department of Education.
(ii) makes the necessary claims for social welfare payments under the required time limits.
(iii) complies with whatever requirements are laid down by the Department of Social & Family Affairs

The comprehensive Circular Letter 9/2013 Maternity Protection entitlements for registered Teachers in recognised Primary and Post Primary Schools supersedes all previous circulars, memoranda, rules and regulations in relation to Maternity Protection Entitlements.



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