ASTI to discuss cyberbullying, working hours

Cyberbullying, working hours and sick leave entitlements will be among the topics debated on the second day of the annual convention of the Association of Secondary Teachers, Ireland (ASTI).

500 second-level teachers from across the country have gathered for the conference which began yesterday in Wexford.

More than 80 motions will be debated over the course of the three-day convention on pay, pensions, working conditions, student welfare and school resources.

A motion this morning will call for stronger legislation to deal with online harassment.

“That the ASTI lobby for the enactment of stronger laws to prevent online abuse and harassment on social media platforms,” the motion stated.

Almost one-in-five secondary school teachers who responded to a recent ASTI survey said they have experienced some form of work-related cyberbullying.

Yesterday in her address to the convention, Minister for Education Norma Foley said she was “deeply concerned” by such reports.

“There is no place for such behaviour against teachers who are simply doing their job,” Ms Foley said.

Another motion today will focus on working conditions and pay, and will call on the ASTI to ballot members on industrial action, up to and including strike action, if unpaid ‘Croke Park’ hours are not terminated before the beginning of the 2025/26 school year.

A separate motion will seek the restoration of teachers’ sick leave entitlements to the arrangements that existed before the economic crash of 2008.

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