Tuesday, 2 December 2008
Dáil Eireann Debate
As the Deputy will be aware the Teaching Council Act 2001 provided for the establishment of a Council for the purposes of promoting teaching as a profession, maintaining and improving the standards of teaching, providing for the establishment of standards, policies and procedures for the education and training of teachers, and other matters relating to teachers and the teaching profession.
The Teaching Council became a self funding body from 28 March 2008. The Council raises its funding from, in the main part, teachers’ initial registration and renewal of registration fees. The annual registration fee is currently €90. In addition the Council has the capacity to charge fees for other services associated with registration including providing copies of or additional registration certificates, letters of professional standing, reviewing programmes of teacher education and qualification recognition.
The recognition and registration of teachers in Ireland is a function of the Teaching Council. The Council has informed my Department that as of 27th November 2008, there are 64,366 persons registered with the Teaching Council.
The Council is not in a position to provide details of those not registered with the Council at this time. The Council will be in a position to provide a more substantive picture when section 30 is commenced.
506. Deputy Tony Gregory asked the Minister for Education and Science the legislative basis for the threatening letters sent to teachers who have not joined the Teaching Council telling them that they will not be paid their salaries. [44013/08]
Minister for Education and Science (Deputy Batt O’Keeffe): Since its establishment in 2006, the Teaching Council is responsible for the promotion of teaching as a profession; the promotion of the professional development of teachers and for the regulation of standards in the profession. All teachers must be registered with the Council and have their qualifications verified to be enrolled on the register of qualified teachers.
While all sections of the Teaching Council Act have not been enacted, the policy of my department is outlined in circular Letters 0016/2008 and 0055/2008. These Circulars outline that to be eligible for recruitment to an Oireachtas funded teaching post, a teacher shall be registered by the Teaching Council and shall satisfy the recruitment policy in the relevant second-level sector as approved from time to time by the Minister for Education and Science. Circular Letter 0055/2008 contains the terms of the most recent and all previous agreements in relation to implementation of the Protection of Employees (Fixed Term Work) Act 2003.
Where an appointment form was received by my Department on behalf of an unregistered teacher, a letter was sent to the person in question explaining the requirements for registration with the Teaching Council. On receipt of confirmation from the Teaching Council that the registration procedure was complete the teacher’s appointment was processed.
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