Rural problems `being ignored'

 

Endemic disadvantage in rural Ireland is being ignored, according to the general secretary of the Irish National Teachers' Organisation (INTO), Senator Joe O'Toole. At the same time, he said, "the poverty industry, with its ever increasing number of reports, seminars, studies, commissions and Government committees, is in danger of taking on a life of its own".

In a pre Budget submission on educational disadvantage, the INTO has called for criteria identifying rural disadvantage to be agreed between the INTO, the Departments of Health and Education, and other relevant authorities. The union also wants a major increase in capitation grants for small schools, and the employment of more resource and remedial teachers.