Commenting on the A-level results in Northern Ireland, Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, the largest teachers’ union in Northern Ireland, said:
“Once again today’s results demonstrate the continuing hard work and dedication of our young people and teachers in sustaining high standards of exam success.
“These results are the culmination of an immense amount of effort by students and schools.
“Teachers in Northern Ireland have achieved these results despite the fact that their working conditions lag far behind those of their colleagues in England, Wales and Scotland, a situation which is compounded by a four year pay freeze and an assault on their pensions.
“The tragedy is that some of the teachers who have worked so hard for the young people who have achieved these results will not be returning at the start of this new academic year as a result of the significant job loss caused by the reorganisation of schools.
“That is why NASUWT members have been standing up for standards through industrial action and are engaged in industrial action which has enabled them to focus on teaching and learning in the crucial lead up to the examinations.
“It is unacceptable that Ministers and employers are failing to secure the rapid and significant progress needed to secure working conditions which would enable teachers to achieve even higher standards.
“The children, young people and teachers deserve better.”
Seamus Searson, NASUWT Northern Ireland Organiser, said:
“Young people in Northern Ireland face some of the biggest challenges in terms of youth unemployment and participation in further and higher education.
“Teachers are doing their best to ensure that all young people gain the skills and opportunities they need to realise their full potential.
“The patience of the teaching profession is exhausted. They want firm and decisive action to immediately improve their pay and working conditions.”
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