Students protest as exam results delayed by pay row
Published 04/02/2010 | 05:00
THOUSANDS of students who are still waiting for their Christmas exam results protested yesterday against the dispute which has caused the delay.
The students at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) say they are the innocent victims of a row over a cut to payments made to lecturers to correct exam papers.
Their mass rally was held as "substantial progress" was reported by WIT in relation to negotiations with the Teachers' Union of Ireland, with a statement now expected within 24 hours, the college said.
The lecturers have so far refused to release the results of Christmas exams to the students, saying that a 50pc cut has been imposed on correction payments by WIT.
Over 3,000 students demonstrated on two campuses yesterday to demand the release of their overdue exam results -- which were originally to have been given out on Tuesday. According to the students' union, many final-year students need their results to help secure employment. Union of Students in Ireland president Peter Mannion addressed the crowd and said afterwards: "The students are merely asking for the release of their exam results, which they are entitled to, after studying hard and sitting them in December."
WIT Students' Union president Cathy Pembroke said members shouldn't be used as "pawns" in the stalemate between the college and the Teachers' Union of Ireland (TUI).
The dispute erupted when the money paid by the college to lecturers to correct exam papers was cut in December. The TUI said that WIT failed to follow grievance procedures, and a ballot of union members saw over 80pc voting in favour of withholding the exam results.