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Saturday 23 August 2014

Teachers may accept new pay deal

Published 22/05/2013 | 20:17

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INTO general secretary Sheila Nunan says the new Croke Park II proposals are better than the Government's alternative

The country's largest teachers' union has recommended accepting a revised pay deal under the Croke Park II talks.

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The leaders of the Irish National Teacher' Organisation (INTO) will ask its 32,000 members to back the new arrangements, agreed after a second round of negotiations.

General secretary Sheila Nunan said it was the clear view of the executive that the new proposals were better than the Government's alternative proposals.

She said they were "better than what was previously available and offered more protection to teachers and their families than the Government's alternatives for public service pay."

Ms Nunan said a permanent pay cut and a three year increment freeze would have a far worse impact on earnings. "Recommendation of acceptance is not an endorsement but an opinion that it is the better of two alternatives," she said.

Among the revisions are a promised alleviation on the proposal to abolish supervision and substitution allowances for all teachers. Under the new proposals the payment will be reinstated in two phases in 2016 and the following year. They also include a reduction in when teachers are expected to provide cover for absent colleagues while all certified sick leave will be covered as will bereavement leave.

The INTO said potential gains in the original proposals have been fully retained such as the improved scales for newly qualified teachers.

The union also said it had made progress on the payment of increments to teachers earning more than 65,000 euro and a commitment has been given on restoration of salary cuts.

Amid the second round of Croke Park II pay talks, public servants have been warned they face compulsory redundancies unless they accept a new deal on cuts in pay and pensions.

They are designed to bring in 300m euro in savings this year and a billion by 2015.

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