14 March 2018

Fitzgerald welcomes extra places on teacher training courses

Local TD Frances Fitzgerald has today welcomed the announcement that extra places will be available on teacher training courses.

Following consultation with the Irish Universities Association, the Minister for Education has announced an expansion of the number of places on post primary teacher education courses at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. There will also be additional places provided in the priority areas of STEM, Irish and Foreign Languages.

“Some concerns have been raised recently with me by local school principals regarding teacher supply issues and I have consistently raised these with Minister Bruton. Some measures have previously been announced to support schools in managing these issues; including expanding the number of days a teacher can work while on a career break. Today the Minister is taking further action by expanding the number of places on teacher education programmes with a heavy emphasis on certain subject areas at post primary level, to ensure that schools can get the right mix of subject teachers.

“The Government have set out ambitious strategies in STEM, foreign languages and digital, as part of our overall goal to have the best education and training service in Europe by 2026. We are now providing additional places to ensure the system can respond more readily to our national priorities and the needs of schools.

“Teaching is a fantastic profession for any young person considering their options, with a starting salary for a teacher straight out of college of nearly €36,000, increasing to €37,600 from October 2020. An additional 3,000 leadership posts have also recently been announced, meaning 1 in 3 teachers in our schools will now be in a leadership position.

“Teachers play a central role in achieving the Government’s ambition to make the Irish education and training service the best in Europe within a decade. I have the deepest respect and appreciation for all those who work with our nation’s children, to teach them, to enhance their learning, to support their all-round welfare and development and I will continue my work with local schools and Principals on any issues.”