ASTI president, Ann Piggott says that teachers in the high-risk category must be facilitated to work from home until they are fully vaccinated.
Piggott’s call was made at the ASTI Annual Convention today, during her speech in front of more than 450 delegates and observers.
The ASTI President said these teachers, and teachers in the 60 to 64-year category, have been told to return to “choc-a-block” classrooms from April 12th.
“The latest promised ease of restrictions will allow only two people who are vaccinated to meet indoors, but in undersized classrooms, the parallel universe continues: 33 can meet without vaccinations,” she said.
Piggott said teachers have “experienced a decade of increased workload which has been exacerbated by the pandemic.”
She said that school principals in particular have had a difficult year, “which will see many principals cutting short their career span short due to exhaustion and overload.”
On the issue of new teachers, Piggott said unequal pay and precarious contracts represent “a meagre starting point to attract young teachers into the profession”.
“Previously new teachers, who really wanted to teach, used to find second jobs in shops, bars and restaurants. Now their only reliable way to earn a steady income in the early years of teaching no longer exists.”