What teachers want: where should a bigger budget go?
Special education resources, teachers’ pay, smaller class sizes, halting casualisation: we ask teachers which areas need most investment
Stormy waters: TUI president Gerry Quinn and ASTI president Philip Irwin at a picket over planned junior cycle reforms. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill
It’s been a stormy few years for education. Since the recession arrived in 2008, teachers have protested, loudly, about cutbacks and changes to the education system. Like it or not, the teaching profession has arguably the most vocal of all trade unions, and they have some degree of clout in deciding where the money goes and what the policies are.
Secondary-school teachers have received most of the media coverage, with a seemingly endless parade of strikes, threatened strikes and various forms of industrial action – and the proposed junior cycle reforms top the teacher grievance list. By contrast, primary teachers appear, at least on the surface, to be happier with their lot, but this belies simmering grievances.