Teacher and Principal Appointments in Primary Schools-Letters of Appointment

In providing a written statement of terms and conditions of employment in accordance with the Terms of Employment (Information) Act, 1994, employers can use either a letter of appointment or a more comprehensive detailed document.


This piece looks at using a letter of appointment to set out the terms and conditions for both teachers and principals.

Constitution of Boards and Rules of Procedure 2011

As set out in the Constitution of Boards and Rules of Procedure 2011:

The prospective employee should not be offered the appointment until the prior approval of the patron has been obtained by the Chairperson of the Board of Management.

With the prior approval of the Patron having been received the Board shall notify the teacher in writing of his/her proposed appointment. The letter of offer to the successful candidate should state that the offer is subject to–

(a) the sanction of the Minister,

(b) confirmation of qualifications,

(c) continued registration with the Teaching Council,

(d) compliance with Garda vetting requirements, and

(e) pre-employment medical screening.


Registration with the Teaching Council

The registration status of the teacher can be checked on the website of the Teaching Council at www.teachingcouncil.ie

Go to the “search the register” section. You will find the following information re the teacher:

  • Registration Number
  • Forename
  • Surname
  • Education Sector
  • The school in which the teacher is employed (as recently notified).


Confirmation of Qualifications

Simply because the teacher is registered with the Teaching Council does not mean he/she is qualified for the job advertised. So obtain confirmation of qualifications.

Sanction of the Minister

The PTAF (primary teacher appointment and reappointment form) must be completed and sent to the Department of Education and Skills. The PUF (panel update form) must be completed where appropriate to ensure that the panel is kept up to date.

Compliance with Garda Vetting Requirements

Garda vetting requirements for teachers are set out in circular 63/2010. Where vetting has not been carried out prior to appointment, the proposed appointee should be advised in writing that his/her appointment is subject to a satisfactory outcome to Garda vetting.

Pre-Employment Medical Screening

Proposed appointees must complete the pre-employment questionnaire for teachers and special need assistants. Medmark reports to the Board of Management on the outcome.

Terms of Employment (Information) Act, 1994

You will also need to furnish information in accordance with the Terms of Employment (Information) Act, 1994 including:

  • The full names of the employer and the employee
  • The address of the employer
  • The place of work, or where there is no main place of work, a statement indicating that an employee is required or permitted to work at various places
  • Job title or nature of the work
  • Date of commencement of employment
  • If the contract is temporary, the expected duration of employment
  • If the contract is for a fixed-term, the date on which the contract expires
  • The rate of pay or method of calculating pay
  • Whether pay is weekly, monthly or otherwise
  • Terms or conditions relating to hours of work, including overtime
  • Terms or conditions relating to paid leave (other than paid sick leave)
  • Any terms or conditions relating to incapacity for work due to sickness or injury
  • Any terms or conditions relating to pensions and pension schemes
  • Periods of notice or method for determining periods of notice
  • A reference to any collective agreements which affect the terms of employment



In addition to the above it is advisable to

  1. Advise the proposed appointee of the ethos of the school and that he/she is required to uphold the ethos
  2. Advise the proposed appointee that the appointment is subject to compliance with the law of the land, rules and regulations and circular letters of the department of Education and Skills, the policies of the school, and the Rules for National Schools
  3. Furnish the appointee with circular 60/2009 which sets out the disciplinary procedures for teachers and principals

Depending on your school, it may be necessary to obtain from appointee a certificate to teach religious education.

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