The incoming president of the Association of Secondary Teachers Ireland said achieving investment for the education sector will be her top priority.
Sally Maguire, who takes up her new post today, is calling on the government to stop cutting teachers and their pay packets.
The former special needs teacher says the sector cannot take anymore hits after five years of continued austerity.
Ms Maguire claimed that cutting teacher's wages was causing problems for students, saying "teachers are worn out."
"They just can't cope any more. It's just one thing after another, and it's affecting students as well.
"We have a terrible situation at the beginning of the profession, too. 30% of our members - 30% of second-level teachers - are in jobs that are not permanent. And that is just appalling."