Wexford teachers in lunchtime protests

David Tucker

Published 12/05/2015 | 00:00

ASTI teachers protesting at the gates of St. Peter's College in Wexford last Thursday lunchtime.
ASTI teachers protesting at the gates of St. Peter's College in Wexford last Thursday lunchtime.

Teachers staged lunchtime schoolgate protests across County Wexford on Thursday as part of a national campaign to underpin their demands for an end to government plans to reform the Junior Cert.

They have already warned that if Minister for Education Jan O'Sullivan continues to implement the proposals, further industrial action will take place.

Under planned changes, final Junior Cert exams in third year will account for 60 per cent of marks, while 40 per cent will be awarded through continuous assessment.

The two main secondary teachers unions, the ASTI and the TUI, claim the objectivity, independence and anonymity of the examinations system will be lost by having to assess their own students.

Teachers had already held two one-day strikes throughout the school term in December 2014 and January 2015, but Wednesday's protest did not disrupt teaching hours.

Speaking outside the gates at St. Peter's College, in Wexford, teacher Peter McMorrow said Thursday's protests were not about disrupting school life, but were all about making a point that the teachers were determined that the Junior Cert should remain an externally-assessed exam.

'That is our benchmark and we want to make that clear.. it is 100 per cent supported by the teachers here,' he said.

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