Temporary, Probationary, Continuous Contracts
There are three agreed forms of contract in Voluntary Secondary schools for wholetime teachers: (i) Temporary, (ii) Probationary and (iii) Continuous.
(i) Contract of Temporary Employment
As a result of the Protection of Employees (Part-Time Work) Act, 2001 agreement was reached between the parties to the Conciliation and Arbitration Scheme and there are now three types of temporary contract, as follows:
A part-time teacher who is employed for the full school year to provide teaching for a specified number of hours during each week shall be offered a Pro-Rata Contract. A Pro-Rata Contract will normally run from 1st September to the 31st August. However, Pro-Rata Contracts may commence during the period 1st September to 31st October inclusive (or the first school day immediately after mid term break if mid term break terminates after 31st October). Contracts must be signed and delivery of service under the contract commenced within that period.
A Pro-Rata Contract shall require the delivery of the teaching service and the associated professional duties pro rata to a permanent whole time teacher. The contract will provide pro rata pay and conditions of employment for the part-time teacher. Payment will be made on a pro-rata basis for the period to 31 August.
Non-Casual Part-Time Teaching Contract:
A part-time teacher who is employed under a contract which obliges him or her to work in an institution for a period in excess of 150 hours during the school year but less than a full school year (e.g. replacing a teacher on maternity leave) shall be classified as a non-casual part-time teacher.
Such a teacher will be paid at a rate calculated by the appropriate annual salary, including appropriate allowances, divided by 735 for each hour worked.
Casual Part-Time Teaching Contract:
A part-time teacher who is not employed on a contract referred to at 1 and 2 above shall be regarded as working on a casual basis until he or she has worked for a period in excess of 150 hours in an institution during the school year. Any such qualified part-time teacher working on a casual basis shall be paid at a fixed hourly rate of €46.85 which is inclusive of holiday pay.
In the event that such a part-time teacher works for more than 150 hours in the school year each additional hour over and above 150 hours will be paid at a rate calculated by the appropriate annual salary divided by 735 for each additional hour worked.
(ii) Contract of Probationary Employment
This may be given to
(a) a teacher entering service for the first time,
(b) a teacher coming from service in another school (except in the case of the redeployment of a permanent teacher), or from service outside the State.
In the cases of (a) and (b) the probationary contract may only be for one year. The manager has the obligation to inform the holder of a probationary contract in writing, three months before the expiration whether or not a post of continuous employment will be offered to him/her on the expiration of the probationary contract. A probationary contract must be followed by a contract of continuous employment if the teacher is continuing in the school. Termination of the contract by the manager during its currency is subject to the appeal procedure.
The ASTI has urged managers to keep probationary teachers informed of their progress during the school year. Any contract other than those contracts which conform to the standard contracts offered to a teacher should be checked out with ASTI Head Office through the school steward prior to signing.
(iii) Contract of Continuous Employment
This is a contract of permanent employment. The teacher may terminate the contract by three months’ notice. The three months is reckoned back from the end of term next occurring, e.g. notice to resign on August 31st must be given by June 1st at latest, and so on for other ends of terms. Notice must be given in writing. If the manager tries to terminate a contract for any reason whatsoever, ASTI Head Office should be contacted immediately. If a teacher is offered a contract other than the standard contract, she/he should seek ASTI advice before signing.
Contract of Indefinite Duration (CID)
A Contract of Indefinite Duration (CID) affords the holder the same rights and entitlements as a permanent teacher, except that their salary is based on the number of hours they teach per week. A CID holder on 18 hours or more may be paid full time salary if they agree in writing to be timetabled up to 22 hours per week.A Form H22 must be completed and returned to the Department of Education or VEC to enable teachers to have their salary adjusted.
CID contracts derive from the Protection of Employees (Fixed Term Work) Act 2003. The granting of CIDs for teachers is governed by Department of Education Circular 0034/09.
In order to qualify for a CID you must:
- be registered with the Teaching Council on a current basis
- hold appropriate qualifications, including PGDE/H.Dip
- have in excess of three years continuous teaching service, under two or more successive written contracts of employment with the same employer that were paid for by monies provided by the Oireachtas
Teachers who meet the above criteria will be entitled to a CID unless:
- Their post will not be viable within a reasonable period, and this was set out as an objective ground in writing in the previous contract
- They are covering for a teacher on an approved scheme of leave of absence and this was set out as an objective ground in writing in the previous contract.
Individual forms of contract are used in most Protestant schools or lay-owned Catholic schools.
Community / Comprehensive Schools
The issue of contracts is still being negotiated. No standard form of contract is yet available for such schools and colleges.
ASTI members transferring employment to a designated Community College from a Voluntary Secondary School are employed on the basis of contracts / agreements negotiated between the ASTI and the relevant Vocational Education Committee.
In accordance with the Protection of Employees (Fixed Term Work) Act 2003, circular letter 0034/09 provides for the provision of Contracts of Indefinite Duration for those in the Community and Comprehensive sector where all the requisite eligibility requirements have been satisfied.
Catholic Voluntary Secondary Schools’ Agreement
The following is the text of the contract agreement negotiated between ASTI and the authorities of Catholic Voluntary Secondary Schools. The text of the various types of contracts is included. It should be noted that elements of the contract, which was agreed in 1957, have been superseded by legislation. Discussions on the drafting of a revised contract have taken place.
Arrived at between the Catholic Head Masters’ Association and the Association of Secondary Teachers, Ireland, and further adopted by the Conference of Convent Secondary Schools (under the approval of the Hierarchy of Ireland given on the 30th day of April, 1957).
Section A – General Provisions
- In the interpretation of this Agreement the word “Head Mistress” shall, where necessary, be substituted for “Head Master”.
- In every case in which a member of the Association of Secondary Teachers, Ireland (hereinafter called a “Lay Teacher”) is employed as a full-time teacher in recognised classes in a secondary school, a written Contract of Employment shall be entered into between the Headmaster and the Lay Teacher and such a contract shall be in such one of the three forms of Contracts set out in the Schedule hereto as is appropriate to the circumstances of the Lay Teacher’s employment.
- It shall be the duty of the Headmaster to present such contract for signature by the Lay Teacher and the duty of the Lay Teacher to sign such contract on presentation.
This contract will be presented by the Headmaster to the Teacher within three months of the Teacher’s taking up duty, and a signed copy shall be presented to the Teacher by the Headmaster.
- In the interpretation of this Agreement and of the Contracts in the Schedule hereto the expression “Appeal Authority” shall bear the meaning prescribed in Section E of this Agreement.
- There shall be no objection to a Lay Teacher becoming and remaining a member of the Association of Secondary Teachers, Ireland or any such Professional Organisation, while such organisation conforms in its aims, constitution and activities, to the accepted doctrine and moral practice of the Catholic Church.
- The procedure in dismissal of a Lay Secondary teacher and Appeal from such dismissal agreed provisionally between the Catholic Headmasters’ Association and the Association of Secondary teachers, Ireland, 1937 and finally ratified by the Hierarchy of Ireland in 1940 shall not apply in respect of Contracts of Probationary Employment, but shall as to Contracts of Temporary Employment or Contracts of Continuous Employment be incorporated herein subject to the several modifications hereinafter contained. (The said Procedure is hereinafter referred to as the 1937 Appeal Procedure).
- The signing of one of the prescribed Forms of Contract shall not preclude any further increase of salary that may be given.
- This Agreement shall continue in force and effect for a period of five years from the date hereof. After the expiration of the said period of five years it shall continue in force and effect until revised by negotiations initiated or requested by either party hereto.
Section B – Contracts of Temporary Employment
- Subject to Clause 3 of this Section a Headmaster shall be entitled to offer, and a Lay Teacher to accept, a Contract (to be known as a Contract of Temporary Employment) in any of the following circumstances, that is to say:
- Where the Lay Teacher is required as a substitute for a serving teacher.
- In any other circumstances in which the use of the Lay Teacher’s services may be required as a temporary expedient only.
- Every Contract of Temporary Employment shall be in the form set out in the First Part of the Schedule of this Agreement.
- The 1937 Appeal Procedure shall apply to the termination of a Contract of Temporary Employment otherwise than by effluxion of time in the like manner and with the like modifications as are hereinafter prescribed in relation to the Contracts of Continuous Employment.
- The maximum period for which a Lay Teacher may be employed by the Headmaster of the same school under a Contract of Temporary Employment or under successive Contracts of Temporary Employment shall not in any circumstances exceed three years.
- A Lay Teacher may at any time determine a Contract of Temporary Employment by one month’s Notice in writing to the Headmaster subject to his satisfying the Headmaster at the time of giving such Notice that he has been offered teaching employment elsewhere either under a Contract of Probationary Employment or a Contract of Continuous Employment.
Section C – Contracts of Probationary Employment
- Every Contract of Probationary Employment shall be in the form set out in the Second Part of the Schedule hereto.
- A Contract of Probationary Employment may be offered to and accepted by any Lay Teacher (other than a Lay Teacher employed by the Headmaster making such offer at the date of such offer under a subsisting Contract of Continuous Employment).
- Clause 4 of the prescribed Form of Contract of Probationary Employment may at the Headmaster’s discretion be modified to give credit for previous Temporary and Probationary Employment.
- Where a Contract of Probationary Employment is entered into by a Lay Teacher who has at any time previously been employed a Headmaster under a Contract of Continuous Employment the period of Probationary Employment under such Contract shall not exceed one year.
Section D – Contracts of Continuous Employment
- Every Contract of Continuous Employment shall be in the form set out in the Third Part of the Schedule hereto.
- In all cases other than cases for which a Contract of Temporary Employment or a Contract of Probationary Employment is provided by this Agreement, a Lay Teacher shall be employed only under a Contract of Continuous Employment.
- The 1937 Appeal procedure shall be modified in substance as hereinafter set forth and there shall be made such formal or terminological modifications as may be necessary consequential upon the substantial modifications hereinafter provided
- the said 1938 Appeal Procedure as so modified is restated in Section E of this Agreement and as so modified and restated shall apply to all Contracts of Continuous Employment.
- The substantial modification of the 1938 Appeal procedure shall be as follows:
For the term “Major Superior “in the 1937 Appeal Procedure there shall be substituted the term “Appeal Authority”. The term “Appeal Authority” shall bear the meaning prescribed in Section E of this Agreement.
Section E – Procedure in Dismissal of a Lay Secondary Teacher and Appeal from such Dismissal
In this Procedure the expression “Appeal Authority” shall mean:
- In respect of any diocesan college or any convent which is “sui iuris”, the Local Ordinary.
- In respect of any college or convent which is conducted by a Religious Order or Congregation and is not covered by paragraph (a) hereof, the Major Superior of such Order or Congregation.
- The expression “end of a School term” shall have the meaning given to it by the rules of the Department of Education and Science for the Payment of Grants to Secondary schools for the time being in force, at the date hereof, shall have the meaning so given in the 1951 edition of the said Rules at present in force, Appendix 1, Section 5.
- Masculine terms and expressions shall connote the feminine.
Application of Procedure
- This Procedure applies only to Lay Teachers employed under Contracts of Temporary Employment and Contracts of Continuous Employment and in respect thereof is subject to the exceptions following, that is to say:
- This procedure shall not apply to the determination of a Contract of Temporary Employment by effluxion of time.
- This procedure shall not apply in any case of Notice of Termination of employment served on a Lady Lay Teacher on the occasion of or subsequent to her marriage.
- In any case in which this Procedure applies, no dismissal of a Lay Teacher shall be effective unless the Provisions of this Procedure have been observed.
- The giving of a salary in lieu of notice shall not be deemed compliance with this Procedure and shall not be approved by the Appeal Authority.
- Before serving on a Lay Teacher definite notice of dismissal (other than notice of summary dismissal for misconduct) or of termination of employment, the Employer shall, in writing, acquaint the Appeal Authority of his intention to dispense with the services of the Lay Teacher and shall state the reason or reasons for his intentions.
- The Employer shall, at one and the same time, in writing:
- Notify the Lay Teacher of the intention to dispense with his services.
- State the reasons or reason for this intention.
- Notify the Lay Teacher that if he wishes to appeal to the Appeal Authority Notice of Intention to Appeal shall be lodged by the Lay Teacher or by the Association of Secondary Teachers, Ireland, acting on his behalf, with the Appeal Authority, at a specified address, within one fortnight of the date of receipt by the Lay Teacher of the Employer’s written notification.
- On receipt of notice of intention to appeal, the Appeal Authority shall acquaint the Lay Teacher, in writing, of the date on which he (or the persons delegated by him) will hear the Appeal and such date will not be later than one fortnight from the day of receipt by him of the Notice of Intention to Appeal.
- The Appeal Authority (or the person or persons delegated by him) may adjourn the hearing of any appeal as often as may be necessary and may require the attendance of any person whose attendance he may deem necessary or desirable.
- In any case of summary dismissal for misconduct, it will suffice for the Employment to inform the Appeal Authority, in writing, of the fact of such dismissal. The Lay Teacher so dismissed shall have the right to appeal to the Appeal Authority within one fortnight of his dismissal and such appeal may be lodged by the Lay Teacher or by the Association of Secondary Teachers, Ireland, acting on his behalf.
- The Appeal Authority may delegate jurisdiction to one or more persons to hear any appeal.
- The dates mentioned in clauses 2 and 3 of this Procedure shall be so arranged that, in all cases (except cases falling within clause 4), the Procedure shall be completed within such times as shall allow definite notice of dismissal or of termination of employment to be served on the Lay Teacher by the Employer not later than the appropriate date required by the Regulations for the time being of the Department of Education and Science for payment of Grants to Secondary Schools secure that the Lay Teacher’s employment shall be terminated, in accordance with such Regulations, at the end of a School term.
- The Lay Teacher shall be entitled at the hearing of any appeal to conduct his own case. He shall further be entitled to be represented, or to be accompanied, or to be accompanied and represented at such hearing by not more than two members or officials of the Association of Secondary Teachers, Ireland.
- The Employer may appear in person at the hearing of any appeal. He shall further be entitled to be represented at such hearing by some person in full possession of the facts.
- Neither the Lay Teacher nor the Employer shall be entitled to be represented by Solicitor or Counsel.