Teachers’ strike ‘a last resort’

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- Credit: Archant

TEACHERS in North Somerset say they have to strike as a ‘last resort’ as the ongoing row over pay and workload continues.

The National Union of Teachers (NUT) has announced members across the country, including ones in North Somerset, will stage a walkout on March 26.

Recent changes by Education Secretary Michael Gove have caused controversy in the profession, with issues of target-related pay and reduced pensions provoking a strike last year.

Jon Reddiford, the division secretary of the North Somerset NUT, said: “Michael Gove’s persistent refusals to address our ongoing dispute over pay, pensions and conditions of service is unnecessary and deeply damaging.”

Leaders from the NUT met with Government officials in October, but they were unable to reach an agreement.

The union cancelled the strike in November and postponed action in February to allow time for negotiations, but they have been unsuccessful.

Mr Reddiford said: “Strike action is always a last resort for teachers and we deeply regret the fact we have been put in a position where we have no alternative.

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“The strike action can of course be called off. For this to happen, we need reassurances that Mr Gove will not go ahead with any changes which worsen teachers’ working conditions. Also, he needs to commit to serious and substantive talks on pay and pensions.”

Union members will be holding rallies and marches in several towns and cities in the run-up to the strike, as well as leafleting in the town centre to talk to parents.