Limerick’s Jan in agreement over junior cycle reform

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

Teachers on the picket lines outside St Clements School in January [Picture: Mike Cowhey]
The threat of further industrial action at secondary schools across Limerick looks to have been averted after agreement was reached in the row over reform of the junior cycle.

The threat of further industrial action at secondary schools across Limerick looks to have been averted after agreement was reached in the row over reform of the junior cycle.

In a joint statement issued this Wednesday afternoon, the Department of Education and Skills along with the secondary teacher’s unions said a proposal to resolve the dispute had been agreed following intense negotiations.

“The leadership of the ASTI and the TUI, along with Minister O’Sullivan, have committed their support and strong endorsement to these clearly stated proposals, outlined in a document entitled ‘Junior Cycle Reform: Joint Statement on Principles and Implementation’ read the statement.

The agreed document outlines a foundation for reform of the junior cycle, within the context of five key principles

The statement says the document will be presented to the executives of both unions this Friday, while the department will present it to all education stakeholders for discussion.

The proposals will be published in full on Friday evening.

The joint statement says the document will be published with the intention of balloting trade union members on its contents as early as possible in autumn 2015.

However, it has not been disclosed if teachers will be required to assess their own pupils as part of the proposal.

Secondary schools across Limerick were forced to close on two separate days in December and January when hundreds of teachers took to the picket lines.

Earlier this month, teachers engaged in a lunchtime protests and prior to this Wednesday’s development, both the ASTI and TUI had indicated their intention to ballot members with a view to staging further industrial action following the summer break.

All sides in the dispute have agreed not to comment further until Friday.