Fianna Fáil spokesperson on Children & Youth Affairs and Midlands-North-West European Parliament candidate Anne Rabbitte TD has said the unacceptable two tier pay structure for school secretaries cannot be allowed to continue.

Deputy Rabbitte commented, “I understand this year it is the case that 10% of the 3,500 school secretaries across the country are employed by the Department of Education. The remaining 90% or so are paid for out of school funding which supports their wages, caretakers and other school supplies.

“What this means is that the remaining 90% do not enjoy the same benefits as their counterparts. There is no safety in these jobs. There is no sick leave, pensions or safeguards.

“The Minister for Education must get to grips with this glaring anomaly and recognise the work of all school secretaries. School secretaries are expected to take on huge responsibilities, from complex administration to organising school events and training days.

“As numerous teachers descend on my own county of Galway, many of whom I have met this week, we must support the secretaries which aide their schools in running seamlessly. Talks must start between the Government and the trade union, in accordance with an adjudication of the WRC back in 2015″, concluded Deputy Rabbitte.