A group representing around 250 secondary school Principals is calling on the government to reconsider sending Leaving Cert students back to school next week.
The Principals' and Deputy Principals' Association says holding 3 days of classes for sixth years will pose significant threats to students and staff.
General Secretary of the Teachers Union of Ireland, Michael Gillespie, says the lack of consultation has been deeply damaging.
"We're very annoyed at the fact there was a complete lack of consultation on this."
The Union Head said the move was announced "without any consideration of the logistical problems and the efforts needed to do this."
"We've been planning for months for all types of eventualities except this one."
Incredible that the Minister for Education, the Minister for Health, the Taoiseach & Tanáiste did not ask NPHET for advice on leaving cert students attending school 3 days a week. How can that be? Beggars belief! @sinnfeinireland
— David Cullinane T.D. (@davidcullinane) January 6, 2021
Social Democrats Education Spokesperson Gary Gannon backed the union's call to revoke this decision.
"[The Government] have to know they got this wrong."
"The absence of consultation pre-making this decision suggests they knew they weren't on to a winner here."
Reaction to the school building closures and recent announcement of 6th year students in school for 3 days a week. Surprised and disappointed at the how students with SENs in mainstream classes are being overlooked. pic.twitter.com/QvBrsE3hQ7
— Gary Gannon TD (@GaryGannonTD) January 6, 2021
Deputy Gannon said there's "no need to get arrogant here".
"Let's just allow leaving cert students to get back to remote learning."