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Education Committee says New Legislation is Essential to Address Dysfunction within Teaching Council

The Assembly’s Education Committee yesterday called on the Minister for Education to bring forward urgent legislation to address a range of regulatory and operational issues within the General Teaching Council NI (GTCNI).

Yesterday’s call followed a recent GTCNI briefing to the Committee which revealed that even though it’s currently in ‘Special Measures’, serious governance and operational issues continue within the organisation.

The Committee Chairperson Chris Lyttle MLA yesterday said:

“While my Committee has welcomed the Minister’s recent announcement of an independent review into governance and operational issues at the GTCNI, we remain unconvinced that this alone will remedy the ongoing dysfunction within the organisation.

“The current regulatory framework within the GTCNI is severely deficient. If the organisation is to recover and rebuild then it must be provided with the power to impose an adequate range of sanctions to address teacher misconduct. This will require new primary legislation, and we are dismayed to learn that this could now be delayed until 2022/23.”

Mr Lyttle concluded:

“Until new and comprehensive legislation is drawn up and enacted, the organisation cannot adequately support teachers, and this is potentially putting our children and young people at serious risk.  

“We are today calling on the Minister to prioritise and bring forward this necessary legislation. The safeguarding and protection of our children and young people is paramount and at the very core of this extremely serious issue.”

Notes to Editor:

Committee Membership:

Chris Lyttle MLA (Chairperson)

Pat Sheehan MLA (Deputy Chairperson)

Maurice Bradley MLA

Nicola Brogan MLA

Robbie Butler MLA

William Humphrey MLA

Daniel McCrossan MLA

Justin McNulty MLA

Robin Newton MLA

Media enquiries to:

Sinead Murphy
Deputy Communications Officer
Northern Ireland Assembly
Phone: 028 90525938

Mobile: 0789 9864368


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