Teaching unions to hold ‘intensive talks’ with UK government after wave of strikes

Teaching unions to hold ‘intensive talks’ with UK government after wave of strikes
Опубликовано: Sunday, 19 March 2023 07:23

National Education Union will steer clear of industrial action for the next two weeks.

LONDON — Education unions will sit down with U.K. ministers for “intensive talks” on teachers’ pay and conditions — and will keep clear of strikes for two weeks to let those discussions continue.

The move comes after health unions reached a deal with the government Thursday after months of pressure for pay rises.

A joint statement issued Friday morning said: “The government and the education trade unions, Association of School and College Leaders, National Association of Head Teachers, NASUWT and National Education Union, have agreed to move into a period of intensive talks. The talks will focus on teacher pay, conditions and workload reduction.”

The NEU — whose members have been on walkouts — has “confirmed it will create a period of calm for two weeks during which time they have said no further strike dates will be announced,” the joint statement added.

Education Secretary Gillian Keegan will begin talks with the unions today, with discussions continuing through the weekend.

Teachers and health workers — whose Thursday pay deal will now go to members for a vote — aren’t alone in their bid for wage hikes amid mounting living costs and a long stint of public sector pay restraint.

The U.K. government has also been hit by industrial action from train drivers, postal workers and civil servants in recent months — and the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union confirmed Friday that passport offices will stage five weeks of action from next month.

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