Here to Help

Since 2002, we've been helping Irish primary teachers in all areas of the job, from advice on technology to getting a job. We also post regularly on all social media. We're here to help so ask us anything.

Blog Post

On JobBridge

Gregor Kerr

I opposed its introduction. I supported NQTs when they looked for a directive against participation in the Work Placement Programme (JobBridge’s forerunner). It is important to remember that the CEC opposed that directive and argued at the Special Conference which discussed the issue that we should allow WPP into our schools in order to give NQTs the opportunity to gain experience and get their probation completed. The call for a directive against participation was overwhelmingly backed, with only the CEC voting against.

When the WPP became JobBridge, and a new directive against participation was issued, it emerged that a small number of principals were intent on ignoring the directive. I was one of a tiny number of INTO members who monitored the JobBridge website and who initiated complaints using the INTO disciplinary process against principals who we felt were in breach of the directive. I, and those others, travelled the length and breadth of the country to attend arbitration hearings in order to protect the integrity of our directive and ensure that JobBridge was stopped.

When I stood for election to the Teaching Council last year, one of the issues I campaigned on was opposition to JobBridge. The newly elected Teaching Council agreed a policy stating that probation could no longer be completed using JobBridge or similar schemes (‘or similar’ being important because JobBridge has now been wound up but a replacement scheme could well be on the way). So I opposed JobBridge and successfully took action to ensure that it was ended.

John Boyle

I volunteered to serve on the INTOs Employment Task Force in 2011. Ireland was in the teeth of recession. At that time our members were very concerned about the impact of staffing cuts on the employment prospects of new entrants to teaching.We were also concerned about how difficult new entrants found it to achieve their probation. Many non-teaching graduates were forced to emigrate or else opted to join internship schemes in order to gain some experience in the workplace. The INTO was the only union to totally oppose the JobBridge Scheme. I represented 3000 teachers in 300 schools in South Dublin and Wicklow. While I was District Rep. no school in our District ever participated in the JobBridge scheme for teaching positions.

I am glad that the JobBridge Scheme no longer exists and especially glad that our union has doggedly and determinedly delivered virtually full employment for our members and a fairer access route to full Teaching Council Registration through paid employment.

Related Posts

Final Thoughts from INTO Presidential Candidates

Gregor Kerr Members have a choice. They can vote for more of the same, for

Do the candidates have opinion on other initiatives?

Apart from the few government initiatives mentioned in the last few days, what do

On coding in schools

Gregor Kerr How many times has the Minister announced Coding as his big new idea?

On the New Primary Curriculum

John Boyle Our 1999 Curriculum is now one of the oldest in Europe. I welcome

On Cosán: INTO Presidential Interview

Gregor Kerr As a member of the Teaching Council I will be watching this one

On Droichead

Readers of will know of my own stance on Droichead, which I’ve been

On Aistear

We ask the candidates some short questions on various initiatives brought in by government

Which cut do you think will be the hardest to reverse?

There were so many cuts made to our profession in the last decade, it’s

Is the union too hierarchal?

One criticism I have of the union is that it is far too hierarchal.

If the DES allowed you to reverse one cut they imposed, what would it be?

Over the last decade, the government made several cuts to the education budget. Very

What do you think is the INTO's biggest challenge in the next few years?

In our series of questions to the INTO President candidates, we wonder what the biggest

How will you attract teachers to engage with the union?

People often complain that fewer teachers are attending union meetings and engaging with the

Do you think the INTO is as influential as it always has been?

We asked both candidates for the INTO President position some questions to see where they

INTO Presidential Election: Interviews

For the first time in many years, the INTO will be having an election