As the three teachers unions meet this week for their annual conferences, an internal report has shown that membership of the country’s biggest secondary teachers’ union has fallen to its lowest level in 15 years.
The drop occurred last year during a dispute between the ASTI and Government, which triggered pay losses for thousands of members.
The report shows ASTI membership fell by almost 2,000 last year to 16,440 – a 10% decrease.
The West Mayo branch saw membership fall by 16%, with a 23% drop in Tuam and an 18% reduction in the East Galway branch.
Meanwhile, 70 thousand teachers could go on strike this September if significant progress is not made on the restoration of pay.
Over 20 thousand teachers are on a lower pay scale since cuts were introduced in 2011, and unions want the pay inequality reversed.