The Transferor Representatives’ Council (TRC) has written to the principals and boards of governors of all controlled schools in Northern Ireland to thank them and all of their staff for their continuing work.
The Transferor Representatives’ Council represents the interests of the Church of Ireland, Presbyterian Church in Ireland, and Methodist Church in Ireland in matters of education policy in Northern Ireland, following on from the statutory transfer of schools managed by the denominations to the first government of Northern Ireland.
In particular, the TRC thanks principals, teachers, all other school staff, and governors “for their commitment to pupils and their mental health and wellbeing, the delivery of education, their dedication to the schools and for their service at this time of global disruption and anxiety.” The letter adds: “Their professionalism is recognised and their service deeply appreciated.”
The Chair of the TRC, Miss Rosemary Rainey OBE, said, “At a recent meeting of the TRC Executive, many heartfelt tributes were paid to school principals, senior leadership teams, staff and governors for the manner in which they had all responded to the additional demands and extra workloads associated with the delivery of the curriculum to pupils throughout the current pandemic.
“In writing as we did, we wanted to commend principals and staff for putting in place arrangements to enable remote learning and for maintaining regular communication between teachers, parents and pupils. Together, the TRC recognises that boards of governors have continued with their responsibilities for oversight of the curriculum, finance, health and well-being of pupils, the provision of education for pupils with special educational needs, and maintaining links with the community. We also wanted to recognise those teachers who have undertaken further professional development to enable pupils to learn by means of online teaching and supervision over the past year – all of which is a credit to them and the profession.”
All school governors in Northern Ireland serve in a purely voluntary capacity and, in respect of controlled schools, boards of governors are representative of the Department of Education, the Education Authority, the TRC, and parents and teachers.
The TRC concludes by encouraging “everyone who believes in the power of prayer” to keep school principals, senior leadership teams, teachers, support staff, pupils and school governors on their regular prayer list: “All need support, encouragement and pastoral care at this time.”