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National - Event Notice
Thursday January 01 1970

Protest Against Education Cuts

category national | education | event notice author Thursday October 23, 2008 18:54author by Gregor Kerr - member Dublin City North INTO & Workers Solidarity Movement - personal capacity Report this post to the editors

The pensioners and the students have shown the way. Now teachers and parents are set to take on the government in response to education cuts announced in the Budget. The two Brians should get ready for another climbdown.

Amongst the Education Cuts contained in the budget are:

  • Class sizes will be increased. This will mean that thousands of children will be in classes of over 30.
  • A school will only be allowed two English as an Additional Language Teachers irrespective of the number of non English speaking students in the school.
  • From 1 January 2009 there will be no substitute cover for teachers on uncertified sick leave. This will lead to serious disruption in schools as the class of the absent teacher will have to be divided.
  • The free book grant for families with financial difficulties is abolished.
  • Funding for special equipment and library books will not now be given to schools.
  • The Plan for Students with Special Educational Needs (EPSEN) Act 2004 has been delayed. This will delay improvements for children with special needs in our school.

On Wednesday next, 29th October, the Labour Party has tabled a motion on class size in the Dáil which is scheduled to be debated between 7.00pm and 8.30pm. To coincide with this the Irish National Teachers Organisation has organised a protest outside the Dáil beginning at 6.30pm. It is most important that the impact of the education cuts on class size, funding and supports for schools are brought home to our elected representatives.

Get along to the protest. Keep the heat on the government

Related Link: http://www.into.ie
author by Mark C - ASTI - Pers. Caps.publication date Fri Oct 24, 2008 12:59author email oscailt at indymedia dot ieauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

This is a very worthy cause and does not just affect the teachers. Whilst each school is rumoured to be going to lose about 3 teachers (my school will probably lose five - out of 25), it is you (students) and your friends/brothers/sisters/daughters and other relations and aquaintances who will ultimately lose out.

* Bigger class sizes
* No more going away for sports, debates, drama, film screenings, guest speakers, visiting colleges, etc.
* Less resource hours/classes for those who with special needs

Please support this demonstration and see the following websites for more detailed information.


Related Link: http://www.indymedia.ie/article/89588
author by Jolly Red Giant - SP/CWIpublication date Fri Oct 24, 2008 16:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Gregor - while dividing classes might happen in primary schools - it won't work at second level. I can see dozens of teachers going on 'certified' sick leave if they continuusly get dumped with extra students. Imagine a home ec class of 25 getting dumped into a woodwork room.

author by lynn m.publication date Sat Oct 25, 2008 17:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

*Subjects such as Physics and Chemistries Grants will be abolished*

author by Gregor Kerrpublication date Mon Oct 27, 2008 12:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Student Teachers take note:

The Education cuts announced in the Budget last week will result in:

· The loss of 500 Language Support jobs (schools will only be allowed a maximum of 2 Language Support teachers no matter how many children they have who do not have English)

· The loss of up to 300 teaching posts as a result of the increase in class size (It’s important to remember that increasing class size doesn’t just mean one extra pupil in each class as things don’t break down that easily. Ireland will now have the largest class sizes in Europe)

· The loss of 60 ‘concessionary’ posts in schools which have disadvantaged status but are not part of DEIS

· The loss of a small number of posts as a result of a cancellation of secondments

This means that in total there will be at least 900 fewer primary teachers in the system next year.

Approximately 800 teachers will retire so the implication is that there will be NO jobs for any of the students leaving College in June and up to 200 teachers currently working will lose their jobs.

So Student Teachers need to get organised, come along to support this demo on Wednesday and help defeat these cuts

author by Gregorpublication date Mon Oct 27, 2008 12:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

From INTO website
# Regional rallies against the cuts will be organised as follows:

* Saturday 8th November: Galway
* Saturday 15th November: Tullamore
* Saturday 22nd November: Cork
* Saturday 29th November: Donegal
* Saturday 6th December: Dublin

author by Studentpublication date Mon Oct 27, 2008 17:25author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Free Education for Everyone (FEE) are supporting this demo and calling for all their members and supporters to attend.

FEE was set up in UCD last month to oppose the reintroduction of college fees.

author by BarryBpublication date Mon Oct 27, 2008 19:15author email barrybrennan at hotmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

To all concerned Citizens of Ireland,

In this bleak post-budget economic environment it is clear that there are many people in Ireland who are concerned for their family’s and their own future, and for the future of Ireland in general. And understandably so. It is bad enough when certain events occur in the globalized economy and society we live in which are beyond our and our government’s control. But when our own government demonstrates ineptitude in the way it manages our state finances, things go from bad to worse. People across the political divide agree that this government badly erred in its judgement with regard to a number of measures announced in the recent budget, not least those which seek to reform the system for medical cards for pensioners, and cutbacks in funding for education.

Now, I am not under the illusion that governing a country is a simple matter - and isn’t very easy to be an armchair critic. But this government failed to seize an opportunity in times of prosperity to save for the rainy day which has now arrived, and we haven’t even begun to see the worst of it. The point here is that this is a situation which could have been brought under control by this government if it had managed the state finances in a manner which the people would have expected and entrusted them to do.

Of all the flaws in the recent budget, the one that for me stands out the most is the cutbacks in education. The contradiction here is almost laughable. On one hand the Government claims that the “way forward” is to turn Ireland into a knowledge-based country and economy, and on the other through its fiscal policies it is creating conditions in education which will make such a lofty ambition seem unattainable. We have to provide the children of this country with the necessary tools and conditions to make the best of themselves, and this government doesn’t seem to acknowledge that fact. It is pity, as Ireland seemed to be marching forward into modernity, now it seems at though it is in reverse. We should all be concerned about the future of this country.

Should we not organize a protest and use the banner "This is Not the Way to Knowledge"?

Barry Brennan

author by Noel McGrath - Computers for Africa publication date Mon Oct 27, 2008 21:33author address author phone Report this post to the editors

In connection with this great campaign for education and development in Africa, please see:


and/or contact: mcgratmj@tcd.ie

Thanking You all, especially my former socialist comrades in Dublin,

Noel McGrath.

Related Link: http://www.camara.ie/
author by npublication date Mon Oct 27, 2008 22:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

That's the slogan that is spreading like a rash in italy in connection with protests against education cutbacks. Would work here too methinks.

From the occupied faculties of the La Sapienza, from the University in mobilization, Rome.

author by lizpublication date Tue Oct 28, 2008 22:12author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I am a mum of five (Including two dyslexics and another learning disabled child) I am also a teacher. I don't feel it necessary to go over the terrible consequences for all children as a result of this budget. (Other commentators have covered this) I would remind everyone that the education system in this country already falls short in many ways and cannot afford to go under the axe. I do worry that the message isn't getting out... in our local paper the overriding concern of the people on the street was still the price of a packet of fags... hopefully by protesting against the cuts we will get the message out there. I don't believe our politicians who after all are elected to represent the people give a damn and I am cynical enough to reckon that protests and petitions only rattle their cages. We really have to persuade people to get them where it matters most to them...and stop voting them in! (irrespective of party) I hope the government will see sense and not willfully ignore the need for increased spending in education. If not I hope the people of this country will stop making excuses for politicians and aboveall stop voting them in!!!

author by Niall Smyth - Dublin City North INTO & People Before Profit Alliancepublication date Tue Oct 28, 2008 22:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Today the People Before Profit Alliance held a protest outside the Green Party meeting on education cuts. Members from Crumlin, Dun Laoghaire, Dublin Central, Dublin South City and Ballyfermot gathered outside the Central Hotel on Exchequer Street to protest at savage cuts in education announced in the recent budget.

Councillor Joan Collins (Crumlin/Drimnagh- CWAG & PBPA) & Richard Boyd Barrett (People Before Profit (PBPA), Dun Laoghaire) joined around 25 other protesters who made their feelings known to Green Party TD's as they made their way into the meeting.

The People Before Profit Alliance support tomorrows protest called for by teacher unions for a full reversal of planned education cuts.

See coverage on TV3 news at:
RTE coverage on the issue:

Related Link: http://www.people-before-profit.org
author by fire alarmpublication date Tue Oct 28, 2008 23:16author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Let's hope there aren't similar protests (or worse) at the Green Party National Black Tie Ball in Carlow next week www.indymedia.ie/article/89627

Related Link: http://www.indymedia.ie/article/89627
author by Pierce Farrellpublication date Fri Oct 31, 2008 11:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I know there's already been one large scale student protest but are any of the elected crowd giving their official support to those outside of third-level? It's one way for students not to appear selfish.

author by Mary Cpublication date Sun Nov 23, 2008 20:32author address author phone Report this post to the editors

My daughter is in a 6th year maths class of 32 students! We received a booklet from the school outlining the effects of the cutbacks and it stated the student : teacher ratio would be increased from 18 per teacher to 19 per teacher..this makes no sense? Also my son is currently doing Transition Year and we have been told that parents may now be expected to pay an additional 150euro (on top of the 300 already paid) as there are insufficent funds for trips, sporting activities etc. I'am absolutly appauled!

author by Mark C - Dept. of Education, ASTI, pers. caps. publication date Sun Nov 23, 2008 21:21author address author phone Report this post to the editors


You are right to be appalled by the cuts to education that were announced in the budget. Just like your daughter in a class of 32, I teach a class of higher level Leaving Cert. English students of 31.

The confusion about having such a big class if the class size should be 18-1 is because the 18-1 is actually for the average class in the school. It is calculated by getting the number of students in a school and dividing it by 18; this lets the school know how many teachers they can have in the school the next year.

In practice it means that some classes might have only 5 or six students (art or Technical Graphics, in our school for example) whilst others have 31 or 32 (as you and your daughter well know).

And of course what is even worse is that the ratio for Transition Year and Leaving Cert. Applied is to be increased from 16-1 to 17-1 which is actually a more drastic cut than the 18-1 going to 19-1 is.

I hope this 1) clears things up for you, and 2) gets you mad enough to contact your local paper/councillor/TD/senator/neighbour.

Mark Conroy.

Related Link: http://markconroy.net/content/cuts-they-hurt
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