“The industrial action by members of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) and the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT) will also hold protest marches in Bristol and Durham as well as in London to voice their anger at the government’s policies that they say risk teaching and education. The strike will hit over 100 councils across England and Wales after the two unions staged another walkout on October 1.
“The NUT said on its website that they will be calling on the government to halt dismantling of the national pay system, stop plans to introduce longer school days and years and scrap proposals that force teachers to work longer and get less in payment and pension.
“‘Strike action is a last resort, teachers have been left with no choice but to demonstrate their anger and frustration in the face of their genuine concerns being dismissed and trivialized,’ NASUWT General Secretary Chris Keates said.
“‘Such action would have been unnecessary had the Secretary of State been prepared to engage in genuine discussions. Teachers are asking nothing more of the Secretary of State than to recognize that their pay and conditions of service are directly linked to the provision of high quality education and that their concerns cannot simply be ignored,’ he added.
“This comes as NUT said even parents are supporting them, citing YouGov poll results that show 60 percent of parents back the continuation of a national pay system for teachers, with only eight percent thinking the government has made a positive impact on the education system.”
Because we are victims of today’s disappearing and weakened organized labor unions that were once the guardians of middle-class workers and representative democracy; because we are victims of a lack of courageous leadership and a lack of sustained organizational acumen; because we are victims of our indecisiveness and political ignorance and our inability to build an effective coalition and to launch a counter-attack against the arrogant wealthy minority that is waging an economic war against the poor and middle class in Illinois, we will remain scapegoats for the reprehensible problems created by the so-called “wealthy elite” until we mobilize our collective efforts against their powerful economic interests, their lucrative lobbying of the state’s policymakers, and their emphasis upon breaking our constitutional contracts.