Teachers' unions to consider junior cycle reform proposals

Department of Education puts forward amended plans to avoid further strike action

Post-primary teachers on strike over proposed junior cycle reforms. The ASTI and TUI are to consider a revised set of proposals on the reforms at a joint meeting of their executive committees. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Post-primary teachers on strike over proposed junior cycle reforms. The ASTI and TUI are to consider a revised set of proposals on the reforms at a joint meeting of their executive committees. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

 

Amended proposals on junior cycle reform will be considered by teachers unions next week in a bid to avoid further strike action.

A revised set of compromise measures is to be circulated by chairman of negotiations Dr Padraic Travers, after further talks between unions and Department of Education officials today.

The ASTI and TUI, who together represent 27,000 post-primary teachers, are to hold a joint meeting of their executive committees next Friday to consider the amended plan.

Last week Dr Travers proposed a set of measures that he said would be the basis for “an honourable settlement”.

The measures included splitting a planned new junior cycle certificate in two, where one part would be marked by the State Examinations Commission through the traditional exam format, and the other through teachers assessing their own pupils.

The unions said “significant aspects” of these proposals were not acceptable to teachers, and that “substantial change, clarification and negotiation on the draft document are required before agreement is possible”.

Dr Travers was said to have provided “clarification” on his proposals at a six-hour meeting yesterday. He is due to circulate an updated version of the plan which takes on board some of the unions’ concerns.

The unions may decide next Friday to ballot members on whether to accept or reject the revised plan.