22 May 2014
22 May 2014
The National Executive of the National Union of Teachers, which met today, has decided that we will not be taking action in the week of the 23rd June to allow time to see if progress is possible in the talks with Government. If there is no progress we will be taking action on July 10th. Flexibility on dates was agreed at the NUT Annual Conference in April.
Unison, GMB and Unite may well be calling upon members in Local Government and Education to take strike action on the same day.
Christine Blower, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers, the largest teachers’ union, said:
“As a result of pressure from the NUT, ministers have finally turned up to the joint union talks. David Laws was at the last meeting and Michael Gove will attend a future meeting.
“In order to assess whether we can make real progress on the matters of most concern to teachers the NUT has decided not to call the strike planned for the week of 23rd June. This gives the Government several more weeks to demonstrate good faith in the talks. The NUT’s National Executive will discuss the talks process again when they next meet on 19th June.
“However, progress is by no means certain and it is very important that we keep up our pressure on the Government. NUT members from across England and Wales will be lobbying their MPs in Parliament and in constituencies on the 10th June to ensure that they are very clear about the issues of concern facing teachers and education. We hope this lobby can help avoid strike action.
“Many parents and the general public share our concerns on issues as wide-ranging as ‘unqualified teachers’ in classrooms and the excessive testing of primary school children. Teacher morale is at a low ebb with many working in excess of 60 hours a week for uncertain pay and worsening pensions and conditions. It is hardly surprising that two in five leave the profession within their first five years, while many other good, experienced teachers are also deciding to go. This is unsustainable.
“The consequences further down the line of this Government’s education policies will be disastrous for a free and fair education system for all. Education is far too important an issue to ignore. The lobby of Parliament on 10th June will send a clear message to Government that teachers will not be silenced. If we make no significant progress in talks the strike action on the 10th July will be solely their responsibility.”