General Teaching Council Northern Ireland

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Regulatory Function

The General Teaching Council for Northern Ireland (GTCNI) is the professional body for teachers in Northern Ireland. We are dedicated to enhancing the status of teaching and promoting the highest standards of professional conduct and practice.

In April 2015 the Department of Education amended the General Teaching Council for Northern Ireland (Registration of Teachers) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2004 and transferred power to the Council to consider cases and remove a teacher from the register on the grounds of misconduct.

Our role as a regulator is defined by legislation and the GTCNI Conduct Rules 2019. The specific powers are contained in the General Teaching Council for Northern Ireland (Registration of Teachers) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2015 (SR 2015/151). These regulations, made under Article 36(3) and (5) of the Education (Northern Ireland) Order 1998, set out the framework within which GTCNI will deliver this statutory function.

The employer (or employing authority), e.g. the school, is required to deal with any allegation of misconduct using the agreed disciplinary process as set out in the ‘Disciplinary Procedure for Teachers including Principals and Vice-Principals in Grant-Aided Schools with fully delegated Budgets’ (TNC 2016/2).

The employer also has a duty to notify GTCNI about any teacher who is dismissed, or may have been had they not resigned, on the grounds of misconduct and to provide us with the information we need to carry out an investigation or any subsequent conduct hearing. This includes allegations involving substitute teachers and teachers on short term contracts.

We recognise that the vast majority of teachers are committed to maintaining the highest standards of professional ethics and conduct. However, in circumstances where a registered teacher’s conduct falls short of these standards and is dismissed by their employer, GTCNI will investigate and, if necessary, remove them from the Register. In this way, the teaching profession continues to enjoy public confidence, which underpins the status of the teaching profession.

It is important to recognise that GTCNI is not a complaints body. We are a professional body and any allegation that relates to misconduct, or conviction of a relevant offence, received by the Council will only be considered, investigated and heard, in the public interest and in the interests of the teaching profession.

Conduct Rules 2019 

Guidance for Employers  

Guidance for Teachers

Guidance on Making a Complaint 


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