Press Releases

Health and safety must be paramount in further and higher education return – TUI 

By piofficer 15 Jun 2021 | 0 comments
Noting the publication of A Safe Return to on-site further and higher education and research today, the Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI), which represents over 19,000 members at second level, further and higher education, has said that the plans must be fully consistent with the most up-to-date public health advice and that the health and safety of all students and staff must be paramount at all times in the process. The union stated that any changes in general public health advice must also be immediately reflected in the plan. Clear and consistent policy and communication on the public health requirements across further and higher education providers will be essential to establishing the necessary degree of confidence and keeping everyone safe.  TUI President Martin Marjoram said that academic staff had displayed great flexibility in the provision of remote learning during the pandemic, notwithstanding the additional work involved.   

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Survey findings highlight continuing damage of pay discrimination and need for supports for students who struggled with remote learning 

By piofficer 05 Apr 2021 | 0 comments
The findings of a new survey of over 1,000 Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI) members highlight the continuing negative effects of pay discrimination on the profession. The survey findings also make clear that teachers believe additional supports will be needed next year to assist those students who may have struggled with the move to emergency remote teaching.  Concerns around a growing drift towards bureaucracy in schools that deflects from teaching and learning are also expressed.  The survey of 1,036 TUI members at second level and in the further education and training sectors was carried out in March. The Union’s Annual Congress takes place on Tuesday and Wednesday.  Comments from TUI President Martin Marjoram:  Pay discrimination issues ‘Of those respondents employed from 2011 onwards, 42% believe as it stands now that they will still be in the profession in ten years’ time, while 29% do not believe they will be in the profession at that point. 29% said that they didn’t know. However, if pay discrimination was to be fully resolved, 74% believe they will still be in the profession in ten years’ time, while 8% do not believe that they will be. 18% said that they didn’t know.  This shows the continuing corrosive effect that pay inequality, which sees those employed after 2011 earning less than their colleagues, is having on the perception of the profession, which is also borne out by an 8% drop in applications for second level teacher training courses through the CAO this year. Progress has been made but even with recent gains there is still an €80,000 loss in career earnings, with the largest differences in salary in the early years of employment. It has led to a teacher recruitment and retention crisis at second level that is making it increasingly difficult for schools to fill teaching vacancies.’ Majority still don’t receive a contract of full hours upon appointment  ‘Just 29% of those employed after 2011 received a contract of full hours upon initial appointment. This means that for a number of years, teachers only earn a fraction of a full salary.’  Student engagement with emergency remote learning  ‘Regrettably, educational disadvantage is nothing new, but a situation where it becomes worsened by the pandemic cannot be allowed.  Of great concern to teachers is that 93% noticed disengagement by some of their students as a result of the move to emergency remote teaching and learning. 76% believe that emergency remote learning had a disproportionately negative effect on students from disadvantaged backgrounds, while 86% believe that additional supports are needed for 2021/22 to assist those students who may have lost out most as a result of the move to emergency remote teaching and learning.  75% said that student engagement with emergency remote learning was better in 2021 than in 2020. Just 8% said that engagement was better in 2020 than in 2021, while the remainder thought it was more or less the same.  89% said that preparation, provision and associated work involved in providing classes remotely took much more time (64%) or more time (25%) than face-to-face delivery.’ 

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Survey shows significant workload increase at third level due to move to emergency remote learning

By piofficer 02 Apr 2021 | 0 comments
The findings of a new Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI) survey of almost 400 lecturing staff have identified a significant increase in workload as a result of the move to emergency remote lecturing. The survey also outlined the health concerns of members in the context of COVID-19 and the effects of pay discrimination on the morale of staff.   

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Provision for pregnant teachers to work remotely should be continued – TUI 

By piofficer 30 Mar 2021 | 0 comments
The Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI) has called for the provision that has allowed pregnant teachers to work remotely to be continued after the Easter break. Throughout the phased re-opening this year, which has to date seen significantly smaller numbers of students in school buildings than will be the case after Easter, pregnant teachers have been allowed to work remotely.   The Department of Education has not yet clarified if this will remain the case after the Easter break and the union has been contacted by numerous pregnant teachers who have expressed serious concerns and anxieties about returning to their schools.  TUI is also seeking clarification on the arrangements for the high-risk and over-60 teachers who have been allowed to teach remotely during the phased re-opening. 

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Ongoing review of public health situation required in phased reopening of schools

By piofficer 23 Feb 2021 | 0 comments
The Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI) today confirmed its consistent position that its members are prepared to facilitate a phased and cautious return of students to schools, subject to the advice and continuing review of the situation by public health authorities. Final year Leaving Certificate students are due to return to schools from 1st March as announced by the Government this evening.      

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