Union defends lecturers' holidays


A TEACHING union has defended the summer holidays and working hours of lecturers in the institutes of technology and accused critics of “mischievous inaccuracies”.

Last week, the Higher Education Authority (HEA) pointed out how lecturers in the institutes begin their summer holidays on June 20th; it also highlighted how they are required to lecture for only 16 hours per week.

John MacGabhann, the general secretary of the Teacher’s Union of Ireland (TUI) said recent months had seen “persistent and mischievous propagation of inaccuracies and lies regarding the working conditions of lecturers within the institutes”. Institute lecturers, he said, teach 18-20 hours a week where the international norm is 10-12.

“For each hour of teaching, a multiple is also spent in evaluation and preparation. Included in a lengthy list of other academic responsibilities are research, devising and updating syllabi on an on-going basis, course development and planning and extensive continuous and final assessment.”

Mr MacGabhann said the spreading of blatant falsehoods about those working within higher education was unacceptable. Institute lecturers have never found themselves more stretched because of the record increase in student numbers and the impact of cuts.