Teachers’ strike threat

Teachers are discussing strike action
Teachers are discussing strike action
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Teaching unions on the Fylde coast say they will take part in a national day of strikes if the Government does not meet their requests following the next round of regional industrial action.

The National Union of Teachers (NUT) and National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT) are both willing to strike if Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, does not review teachers’ demands over pay, pensions and workloads.

North West teachers, including some on the Fylde coast, went on strike on June 27.

Now other staggered regional strikes are taking place with parts of the Midlands, Yorkshire and the Humber taking to the picket line on October 1 and London, North East, South East and South West on October 17.

Sam Ud-din, a representative of Lancashire’s NUT said: “What we are looking to see from these strikes is Michael Gove moving his position as a consequence of the action already taken.

“If there’s still no movement from him we will be taking further action across the whole of the country in November. We are willing to strike but will stop if we make progress.

“The national strike will have a large impact because it will help teachers to be acknowledged (by the Government) in the same way as MPs and business leaders are acknowledged.”

Under reforms, set to come into effect from this autumn, pay will be linked to performance in the classroom and head teachers will have greater flexibility over salaries.

John Girdley, Lancashire national executive member for the NASUWT, added: “We will bring the whole country out if Michael Gove doesn’t listen to the second round of regional strikes.

“Nobody wants to go on strike but Gove won’t talk to us.

“We can just see the education of children getting worse and worse until he sees teachers as a valuable commodity.”

A spokesman for the Department for Education, said: “It is disappointing the NUT and NASUWT are striking over the Government’s measures to allow heads to pay good teachers more.

“In a recent poll, 61 per cent of respondents supported linking teachers’ pay to performance and 70 per cent either opposed the strikes or believed that teachers should not be allowed to strike at all.”