HC Deb 23 November 1911 vol 31 c1527W
Captain CRAIG

asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland the number of first-class teachers at present in the service of the Commissioners who have had their salaries reduced owing to the average of their schools falling below thirty-five; if a fall in average from thirty-five to 34.4 is deemed sufficient reason for reducing the teachers' salary by 20 per cent., and for dismissing the junior assistant of the school in addition; and if he is prepared to recommend to the Treasury that a swing of ten in attendance be allowed in these cases as in the case of assistant teachers.


The information asked for in the first part of the question is not available. The hon. and gallant Member appears to me, and I do not wonder at it, to be confusing two different things—namely, the averages which determine the number of teachers in a school and the averages which determine the grading of individual teachers. The so-called swing conceded by the Treasury this summer relates solely to the number of teachers who can be recognised in a school, and has nothing to do with their grading. The only junior assistant in Irish national schools is a junior assistant mistress, who can be appointed to any school where there is an average attendance of thirty-five, and, once appointed, need not be withdrawn until the attendance falls below thirty. As regards grading, no teacher in a school in which the average attendance is under seventy is eligible for promotion to the first division of the first grade, and no teacher in a school where the average is under fifty is eligible for promotion to the second division of that grade. In either case an average attendance of thirty-five is necessary to warrant the continuance of first grade salary. In reckoning the average attendance no notice is taken of a drop of less than half a unit. No change in the rules appears to be required.