Time for a fair deal for teachers

 

A chara, – Fiach Kelly writes in “State may pay to train teachers” (News, December 30th, 2017) that the Government is considering paying “some if not all of the cost of a teaching qualification” to tackle chronic shortages of teachers in key subjects. Other proposed measures referred to in this article include upskilling existing teachers and “offering incentives to those coming out of college with applicable qualifications and attempt to incentivise them to become teachers by, for example, paying the fees for the masters in teaching course”.

Whilst there is no denying that shortages of teachers in these subjects must be addressed, it will remain an uphill battle for Government to attract college graduates into the teaching profession or indeed hold onto those who have qualified as teachers when so many do not receive equal pay for equal work. This inequality leads to increasing numbers of teachers considering leaving their jobs (especially in excessively expensive residential market rental areas like Dublin) as they struggle to have any quality of life on these low and unequal starter salaries.

Our younger teachers are highly skilled and specialised classroom practitioners trusted on a daily basis with huge and far-reaching responsibilities. By allowing the differential pay-scales to continue, we are telling our teachers that they don’t matter and we don’t care.

For any measures to be effective they must tackle this fundamental injustice and ensure equal pay for equal work.– Is mise,

CATHERINE MARTIN TD

Dublin Rathdown

Constituency,

Green Party Deputy Leader,

Leinster House, Dublin 2.