Teachers seek contract with development involved

Continuous training should be integral not added ‘chore’, says school principals’ body

The National Association of Principals and Deputy Principals said existing employment terms should be renegotiated to make them “more fit-for-purpose, setting out the rights and obligations of teachers and their employers”. Photograph: David Sleator

The National Association of Principals and Deputy Principals said existing employment terms should be renegotiated to make them “more fit-for-purpose, setting out the rights and obligations of teachers and their employers”. Photograph: David Sleator

 

A new contract for teachers that makes professional development an integral part of the job rather than an added “chore” has been sought by secondary school principals.

The National Association of Principals and Deputy Principals said existing employment terms should be renegotiated to make them “more fit-for-purpose, setting out the rights and obligations of teachers and their employers”.

Director Clive Byrne said: “A comprehensive national teaching contract would provide certainty to all teachers on areas such as set hours for teaching, assessment or continuous professional development, duties and responsibilities in the classroom and wider school, pathways to promotion, etc.

“Equally, it would assist their employers, whether the Department of Education or principals, in determining their own responsibilities to their teachers and also the roles and duties of their teaching employees.”

Criticised

While small secondary schools have been given some relief in the form of teaching cover for assistant principals to allow them carry out administrative duties, a 2009 moratorium on filling middle-management vacancies created by retirements remains in place.