Sunday 18 March 2018

Enda Kenny takes a swipe at ASTI during Brexit conference

Taoiseach Enda Kenny Photo: Justin Farrelly
Taoiseach Enda Kenny Photo: Justin Farrelly

Cormac McQuinn Political Correspondent

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has taken a swipe at industrial action by teachers from the ASTI saying it "doesn't help" as the country tries to respond to Brexit.

He also warned against a "loosening of the purse strings" amid growing industrial strife.

Mr Kenny said there is a war for talent as multinational companies decide where they're going to invest.

He said that while Ireland is in "a position of some strength" the country "cannot be in anyway complacent about this."

"Our education system has to be fit for 21st Century purpose providing our young people with a solid foundation in which they will learn their future skills...

"The unilateral decision of the ASTI to withdraw from supervision and substitution doesn't help that case."

Hundreds of schools have had to close today as a result of the ASTI decision.

Meanwhile, Mr Kenny said there "can be no departure from the responsible management of the public finances."

"We cannot go back to the boom-and-bust, the when-I-have-it-I-spend-it recklessness that brought the country to the brink," he said.

"And, to those who argue for a so-called loosening of the purse-strings, they should remember that loose spending eventually has to be reined in, and when that has to happen in an unplanned way, it bears hardest on those who rely most on public services and supports."

Mr Kenny made the remarks at an Irish Times conference on Brexit this morning.

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