Quinn says teachers will lose redundancy protection
Supervision and substitution payments could also be hit for ASTI members
Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn has warned teachers who are members of the ASTI that they will lose protection against compulsory redundancies on foot of their decision to reject the Haddington Road agreement. Photograph: Cyril Byrne
Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn has warned teachers who are members of the ASTI that they will lose protection against compulsory redundancies on foot of their decision to reject the Haddington Road agreement on pay and pensions.
Speaking in the Dáil yesterday, he also said teachers would face a “monetary impact” as the Government applied the full measures of financial emergency legislation introduced over the summer for groups in the public service that did not sign up to the deal.
Separately Coalition sources hinted the Government could cease payment of the €1,700 supervision and substitution allowance to ASTI members on foot of their decision to reject the agreement.
In a note on its website the ASTI yesterday told members supervision and substitution arrangements were voluntary and still qualified for payment.
Under the terms of the agreement, members of teaching unions that backed the deal will not be paid supervision and substitution allowances.
‘All options’ available
A spokeswoman for the Minister said Mr Quinn had the power to change the terms of the existing supervision and substitution scheme in schools for members of the ASTI and that “all options were on the table”.
A decision by the Government to end supervision and substitution payments could escalate the dispute.
The Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI), which has accepted the agreement, has told its members they should not undertake work normally carried out by teachers who are in the ASTI. ASTI and TUI members work side by side in more than 100 second-level schools around the country.
ASTI general secretary Pat King said yesterday the dispute was not about money and teachers were available to meet Government representatives to discuss their position.
The Government insists there can be no renegotiation of the Haddington Road deal.
Mr Quinn said he was “extremely disappointed that the ASTI have not accepted the agreement”. He urged the ASTI “to examine the costs to their members of remaining outside the Haddington Road agreement and to reflect upon this matter again”.
“The impact to individual ASTI members of remaining outside the Haddington Road agreement will be the full impact of the Fempi [financial emergency] legislation on their members,” he said.
“In addition to the monetary impact on individual teachers, the Haddington Road agreement also provides additional benefits for young teachers, particularly in relation to securing permanent status as teachers. All of this represents a major impact on ASTI members relative to other teachers.”
Mr Quinn said the decision by ASTI to remain outside the agreement and to withdraw from existing commitments meant “the protections and benefits of the agreement, including those in relation to security of tenure, are not available to their members”.
“This will be a matter of concern to many teachers and underlines the strong case for reconsideration by ASTI,” he said.
As part of its industrial action, which is to begin on October 2nd, the ASTI has directed members not to hold parent-teacher meetings outside school hours.