Anti-Teacher backlash

Good evening to all on this wet and horrid night. I am writing this from the comforts of my bed!I am getting stuck into the Sunday Times, which is my preferred choice of reading on a Sunday. Today though, I am not so happy with this paper. The front page is dominated by the scandal of the “unqualified and unvetted” sub teacher. What? I cannot believe they are only hearing about this now! This was why the Teaching Council was established 2 years ago. They were meant to regulate, vet and improve teaching as a profession. To this date, I cannot name one thing they have done for us apart from look for our votes.. However, I am open to anyone from the Teaching Council putting me straight. You know the email, drop me a mail!
Anyway, the Sunday Times is shocked that Principals are taking in personnel that are not qualified and could be paedophiles or anything, I totally agree with them but the DES give schools or BOM no choice or room to manoeuvre. The Times basically were making out that Principals can select from huge groups of vetted and qualified teachers…we know this is not the case. The “sub” system is a joke in this country. Anyone can step into a classroom and Principals have no way of truly knowing who their subs really are and even if they do know their subs are unqualified, I don’t think Principals would have an option but to take them on for the day. The alternative would be to “split” the class as will happen in January. Depending on the school, a classroom teacher might have to take 10 more pupils on top of her 32? 42 in a class? Hilarious!
The Sunday Times also received a statement from the DES re: the shocking story of unqualified staff in our classrooms. The DES said this was a matter for the BOM. Passing the buck seems to be the favourite game of the DES.
The Front page made me laugh out loud as they actually paid 2 journalists to go “undercover” and pose as “teachers”, they should have saved their money and spent it on some writing classes as I could have told them for free what exactly is going on in Irish primary classrooms and I am sure every parent knows this too.
What angered me more was inside the paper there was no less than 3 other articles criticising teachers about taking sick days unless they were at death’s door. As a teacher, if I have a sore throat or if I feel weak, I cannot carry out my teacher duties. There is no way I can just try to manage a class in that condition. Whereas a journalist would have the luxury of working from home or plugging away at a computer for the day or even going “undercover” as a “teacher” for the day.
Anyway, rant over!
I feel annoyed at the Sunday Times, an apparently ” semi-intelligent and moral” newspaper to fill the public with untruths, half truths and old, old news that needs to be sorted out by the DES. Not the BOM, not the Principal and certainly not the Sunday Times undercover journalists.
Until next week, keep protesting, keep shouting and keep emailing!
Local meetings are happening in towns this and next week so get in touch with your local Union to find out the exact details, we need to be vocal!
Till next week.

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