Loss of Limerick teaching posts a serious blow – Deputy Jonathan O’Brien
Commenting on reports that up to 11 lecturers at Limerick College of Further Education could lose their jobs as a result of budget cutbacks, Sinn Féin education spokesperson, Jonathan O’Brien TD, has said that the worst fears of teaching unions are being realised.
He continued: “I understand that Limerick College of Further Education has been forced to cut six whole-time equivalent positions as a direct result of the decision announced in December’s budget to increase the pupil-teacher ratio from 17 to 1 to 19.
“This means that up to 11 staff will find themselves unemployed at the end of the academic year and to make matters worse, staff on temporary or part-time contracts were informed they would not have their contracts renewed.
“This is massive blow to the teaching staff at the college and it will greatly reduce the capacity of Limerick College of Further Education to deliver they type of specialised courses that are so essential in re-skilling and up-skilling people seeking employment opportunities.
“I hope to meet with the Teaching Union of Ireland (TUI) to discuss what can be done to get these cuts to the pupil teacher ratio reversed and Sinn Féin is determined to do all within its power to force education minister, Ruairí Quinn reverse the increase to the PTR.
“Increasing class sizes in the further education sector will result in hundreds of teachers losing their jobs and it has a disproportionate impact on marginalised learners who need to be supported in their studies.”