March 29, 2021
Pregnant teachers need clarity urgently – Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Education Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD has this morning called on the Minister for Education to urgently release the report of the expert group, and provide much-needed clarity to pregnant teachers on whether they can continue to work remotely.

Teachta Ó Laoghaire said:

“Many pregnant school staff, who are understandably concerned and anxious to know whether they will continue to be facilitated with remote working after the Easter break, have been in contact with me.

“School staff who are pregnant are very worried that their being permitted to work from home is only temporary, and that they will have to return to classrooms in the next few weeks.

“The Covid incidence in the community is still very high, and we have heard the worrying news about the potential impacts of Covid on pregnancy. I understand why these staff are desperately seeking clarity.

“At the beginning of this month, I raised with the Minister for Education the need for clarity for pregnant school staff. I urged her to ensure that pregnant staff should continue to have the flexibility and the option to work remotely through Level 5 at a minimum.

“The Minister replied that any decision would be made off the back of a report by an expert group on the matter. We are still waiting on that report, all the while pregnant staff are getting more and more worried.

“I am calling on the Minister today to urgently release the findings of this report and to provide much-needed clarity to pregnant teachers on whether they can continue to work remotely through at least Level 5.

“It is unfair to leave this cohort in the lurch for this long. They are understandably stressed, the Minister must provide them with clarity and peace of mind as soon as possible. “

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