Secondary teachers in Ireland are to take industrial action from October 2nd after a resounding ballot result, rejecting further cuts. The teachers, who are members of the Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland (ASTI), will boycott after school meetings and training for two weeks.

ASTI is the only teaching union, which has refused to accept the so called Haddington Road agreement. In a press release on their website, ASTI said: “Teachers’ message today is that they have given enough. All second-level teachers are delivering more with far less resources at a time when their pay has been cut significantly and their working conditions have greatly disimproved. The Haddington Road Agreement is a step too far. Second-level schools are at the tipping point, having been stripped of key supports and personnel. Young people’s education has been diminished and their futures compromised. Haddington Road means taking more from education and from teachers."

Ireland is one of the Eurozone countries, which has been hit hardest by the crisis since 2008. Formerly known as the 'celtic tiger' economy, because of huge growth fuelled by the financial sector, the government agreed to a bailout, which came with the usual baggage of massive cuts to the public sector.  Although there has been opposition from teachers, other public sector unions and communities to these cuts, the latest deal is even worse than the Croke Park deal, which was negotiated by the Irish trade union movement, and which amongst other things took away some labour rights from teachers, cut pensions, lengthened hours and cut pay.

The video clip above shows one of the many actions by teachers and communities against cuts.