Thursday, 27 March 2014
Department of Education and Skills
Public Sector Allowances Review
58. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the reason a person (details supplied) in County Kerry does not qualify for a masters degree allowance in view of the fact that the person has the necessary qualifications and considerable teaching practice; and if this decision will be reviewed. [14454/14]
In 2012 a public service-wide review of allowances was carried out by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform. As a result of the review, qualification allowances were abolished with effect from 1st February 2012. Department of Education and Skills Circular 0008/2013 outlines the effect of this decision on teachers. The Circular was agreed under the auspices of the Teachers' Conciliation Council, a body established in accordance with the terms of the Conciliation and Arbitration Scheme for Teachers. The Council is composed of representatives of the teacher representative bodies, school management, the Department of Education and Skills and Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, chaired by an official of the Labour Relations Commission.
In Paragraph 12 of Circular 0008/2013 an exception is made in the case 'where as at 5 December 2011, a teacher in employment on that date and eligible for receipt of a qualification allowance in respect of the post they held on that date, was actively undertaking a course of further study leading to an additional qualification, provided that the teacher does not cease to be a registered student on that course before its completion. Such individuals may apply to the Department/VEC as appropriate for a derogation from the general position within 3 months of the date of receipt of the award'. As the person concerned was not a teacher in employment on 5 December 2011 and not eligible for receipt of a qualification allowance in respect of any teaching post on that date they do not qualify for payment of an allowance in respect of the qualification related to the course being undertaken at that time.