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Government U-turn on teacher numbers

The Government has been forced into a partial Budget U-turn on cuts to teacher numbers in disadvantaged primary schools, writes Michael Brennan and Katherine Donnelly.

Pressure from Labour and Fine Gael backbenchers, schools, and the Irish National Teachers Organisation (INTO) has led to some rowing back on plans announced last week.

Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore announced the changes during an exchange with Sinn Fein's Mary Lou McDonald yesterday.

It will affect schools in band one of the Delivering Equality of Opportunity to Schools (DEIS) scheme. Junior primary schools will continue to be allowed one teacher for every 20 pupils, rather than the 1:22 announced in the Budget.

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