Cluster Meetings: Information for NQTs
● Cluster meetings take place for NQTs engaging in the Droichead process and are facilitated by NIPT.
● NQTs must attend one cluster meeting (2-hour duration) per term for the duration of their Droichead process and one additional professional learning activity.
● NQTs must have applied for Droichead via the ‘My Registration’ portal on www.teachingcouncil.ie and received a confirmation email prior to attending cluster meetings.
● NQTs must attend Cluster Meeting 1 before attending Cluster Meeting 2 and/or Cluster Meeting 3.
Cluster Meeting 1 provides NQTs with information relating to all aspects of the Droichead process. Subsequent cluster meetings provide NQTs with opportunities to engage in further professional development and to share their learning from the process with one another.
● The national schedule for cluster meetings is available on www.teacherinduction.ie. This outlines the timeframe during which cluster meetings take place over the course of the school year. Specific dates, venues and times of cluster meetings are advertised on education centres’ websites. See www.ateci.ie for details on the location of full-time education centres. NQTs must register with the relevant education centre to attend the relevant cluster meeting(s).
● All NQTs in attendance at cluster meetings must sign the register which is returned to the education centre administrator by the associate at the end of the cluster meeting.
● The following attendance protocols apply to the NIPT Droichead Cluster Meetings: The duration of each cluster meeting is 2 hours. NQTs who arrive more than 10 minutes after the meeting has commenced are welcome to stay but are unlikely to be credited with attendance. NQTs who leave prior to the completion of the meeting are unlikely to be credited with attendance. If an NQT thinks that he/she will not be in a position to stay for the duration of the cluster meeting, it is their responsibility to source another opportunity to attend that cluster meeting.
● NQTs are reminded to bring Form D (available at www.teachingcouncil.ie) to each cluster meeting they attend as it will need to be stamped at the meeting to confirm their attendance. Maintaining this record is the responsibility of each NQT.
● NQTs are encouraged to read the policy Droichead: The Integrated Professional Induction Framework prior to attending Cluster Meeting 1. Both the policy document and Form D are available on the Teaching Council website. NQTs should also familiarise
themselves with the Post-qualification Professional Practice Procedures and Criteria for the relevant academic year, available on www.teachingcouncil.ie.
● Cluster meetings are sector specific. Primary and Post-Primary NQTs must attend the cluster meeting(s) that is/are relevant to their sector only. NQTs teaching in Special Schools must attend the cluster meeting relevant to their sector.
● NIPT associates are available for consultation before and after cluster meetings to assist NQTs who have queries. Where further help is required, we advise NQTs to contact the Regional Development Officer (RDO) for their area. Contact details for RDOs are available on www.teacherinduction.ie
● NQTs who have queries about cluster meeting attendance should contact the local education centre in which the cluster meeting took place.
● NQTs undertaking Droichead are asked to discuss their Droichead requirements with the Professional Support Team (PST) in their schools. NQTs who have school-based queries should discuss these with the PSTs in their schools.
● NQTs should also engage in one other additional professional learning activity as part of their Droichead process. The NIPT Induction Workshop Programme consists of a series of workshops specifically designed for NQTs with a practical classroom focus. NQTs undertaking the Droichead process can attend a workshop as their additional professional learning activity. These workshops are available at education centre level. NQTs must register with their local education centre to attend. The national workshop schedule is available on www.teacherinduction.ie.
● The Teaching Council now allows that NQTs who have fulfilled the 20-hour Induction Workshop Programme requirement prior to applying for Droichead are required to attend Cluster Meeting 1, only.
● The NIPT website (www.teacherinduction.ie) is a source of support throughout the year providing information on planning, the Droichead process and school support.
The NIPT motto is ‘To ask for support is a sign of strength.’