Trainee and retired teachers and filling staffing gaps


Sir, – I note with concern Carl O’Brien’s article detailing the Minister for Education’s response to the lack of qualified teachers to cover maternity leaves, etc, in primary schools (“Trainee and retired teachers will be asked to plug acute staffing gaps”, June 9th). Richard Bruton proposes using the services of unqualified trainees and bringing back retired teachers. Were I to under go surgery I would expect a qualified surgeon to perform the task, not a trainee; nor would it be acceptable to require retired gardaí­to keep the streets of the capital free from violence and crime. I also expect that when I send my child to school that they are being thought by a qualified Garda-vetted teacher, not merely supervised by a random stranger. It’s about time that this Government grew-up and began to take child welfare and education seriously. We need dedicated supply panels of qualified teachers to cover maternity leaves and illness and the young teachers need to be paid a fair wage to dim the allure of sun and cash in Dubai and Arabia. – Yours, etc,



Co Cork.