NI teacher registry boss says staff ‘working overtime’ to clear bureaucratic backlog before term starts

The General Teaching Council For Northern Ireland (GTCNI) has apologised for the current delays in processing applications for teacher registration.

The News Letter reported on Saturday that children could face the prospect of being sent home from school due to staff shortages arising from a backlog involving 140 teachers.

That worst case scenario came from NASUWT, the Province’s biggest teaching union.

Many teachers are still not registered – which is a legal requirement – despite the start of term now being about one week away.

Pupils sitting a test

Brendan Morgan, chair of GTCNI, said: “I can assure you that every member of the GTCNI registration team has been working beyond their normal hours to clear this backlog as quickly as possible.

“We would be grateful for your patience and understanding so that staff can focus on resolving this regrettable situation which is outside their control.

“Subject to internal checks, teachers who have received an invoice and made their online payment should receive their registration details within 24 hours.”

The GTCNI is a public body linked to the Department of Education. In order to teach at nursery, primary, or secondary level, teachers must be on its register.

Mr Morgan added: “As all the registration officers are focusing on this task, they will have limited ability to immediately respond to telephone and email inquiries at this time.

“It is also important to emphasise that any time spent responding to such inquiries diverts their capacity away from processing urgent applications.”

Mr Morgan said that if anyone believes that their inquiry is too urgent to wait, they should contact the council by email at [email protected] outlining the basic nature of the inquiry and someone will respond as quickly as possible.

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