Results of ASTI ballot to be announced

Secondary teachers have been voting on proposals put forward by the Department of Education

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The results of a ballot by secondary school teachers involved in a long running dispute will be known later today.

Around 18,000 members of the ASTI have been voting on proposals put forward by the Department of Education aimed at resolving an ongoing row over pay and conditions.

The dispute centres around equal pay for new entrants and supervision and substitution duties.

The withdrawal of ASTI members from supervision duties last year led to the temporary closure of some schools in October & November.

Further closures were averted when planned strike action was suspended to allow for fresh talks and a new proposed deal.

The association says results of the vote are expected in the late afternoon or early evening after the ballot closed yesterday.

The union's executive committee had recommended that members reject the deal.

It remains unclear what form of industrial action would take place, and the impact it would have on students if members vote no.

Announcing the ballot late last year, ASTI President Ed Byrne said: "In opposing these measures, ASTI members have had to contend with the Government’s unilateral use of the draconian FEMPI [Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Interest] legislation against them.

"This has included the removal of improved access to job security for young teachers, the removal of payment in recognition of supervision and substitution work, and the threat of redundancies. However, despite this [ASTI Central Executive Council] is of the firm belief that the proposals are not acceptable, and should be rejected by members.”

The ASTI has not ruled out further strike action, but has indicated that any industrial action would not affect students in the same way as last year.