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Schools across Mid-Ulster to close as teachers strike

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

TEACHERS in Mid-Ulster and Tyrone are set to strike at the end of the month, in a move which is expected to close local schools.

The rolling day of action is being held by the National Association of Schoolmasters/Union of Women Teachers on 31st January.

Around 40 local schools are set to be affected by the strike.

The strike centres on a disagreement over pay.

Teachers are being offered a 1 per cent pay rise for this year, with no rise being offered for 2015/2016. They have rejected such an offer.

NASUWT general secretary, Chris Keates said: "It is with deep regret that we remain in this position, but we have been left with no choice by the blatant disregard of the Minister for Education, Peter Weir, and the employers for the pay and conditions of service of teachers.

"If the next phase of strike action goes ahead, it will be the responsibility of the Minister and the employers.

"We have repeatedly made it clear that strike action can be avoided if there is an improvement on the zero per cent award for 2015/16."

Reflecting on this announcement, the Education Spokesperson for the UUP, Sandra Overend MLA has expressed her concern.

"It is clear there is continuing concern about the ongoing teachers' pay dispute which has been dragging on for far too long.

"I said before Christmas that I was not convinced that the Education Minister has any desire to resolve this ongoing dispute.

"To date he has done nothing to prove otherwise. In fact, the Minister has recently referred to the teaching dispute as a matter that has already been settled.

"I reiterate my concern that it looks as though he is hiding his head in the sand, hoping that if he waits it out, this problem will just go away. Being in tune with the feeling on the ground, "I can only conclude that the Minister is completely out of touch with reality on this issue.

"Ultimately it is the pupils who will suffer the most as a result of this debacle.

“The Education Minister has belittled the concerns of teachers and has sneered when I and fellow MLAs have tried to impress upon him the severity of the situation. "Further concerns by teachers surround the idea of moving to a performance-related pay system.

"This would put teachers and schools in a state of competition which is concerning, especially at a time when continued professional development does not seem to be a priority for the Department.

"This issue has been ongoing now for six years. Enough is enough. The Minister and the Executive must bring proposals to resolve this issue when they present the budget in the early part of this year."

 

Schools affected by the strike include...

Aughamullan Primary School, Dungannon
Carntall Primary School, Clogher
Aughnacloy College, Aughnacloy
Cookstown High School, Cookstown
Cookstown Primary School, Cookstown

Drumglass High School, Drumglass
Dungannon Integrated College
Dungannon Primary School
Fivemiletown College
Holy Family College, Magherafelt

Holy Trinity College, Cookstown
Holy Trinity Primary School, Cookstown
Killyman Primary School, Dungannon
Kilronan School, Magherafelt
Laghey Primary School, Dungannon

Magherafelt High School, Magherafelt
Magherafelt Primary School, Magherafelt
Orritor Primary School, Cookstown
Phoenix Integrated Primary School, Cookstown
Primate Dixon Primary School, Coalisland

Rainey Endowed School, Magherafelt
Royal School Dungannon, Dungannon
Sperrin Integrated College, Magherafelt
Sperrinview Special School, Dungannon
St Brigid's  Primary, Augher

St Brigid's Primary School, Dungannon
St Columb's Primary School, Desertmartin
St John's Primary School, Moy
St Joseph's College, Coalisland
St Joseph's Primary School, Galbally

St Mary's Grammar School, Magherafelt
St Mary's Primary School, KillyClogher
St Patrick's Academy, Dungannon
St Patrtick's College, Dungannon
St Patrick's Primary School, Coalisland

St Patrick's Primary School, Dungannon
St Pius X College, Magherafelt
Tamnamore Learning Centre, Dungannon
Walker Memorial Primary School, Dungannon
Windmill Integrated Primary School, Dungannon

Woods Primary School, Magherafelt.

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