The National Education Union (NEU) has called off its prolonged strike action, as members of UK’s largest teachers’ union have voted to adopt the government’s new pay offer of 6.5%.
After months of deliberations with labour unions, the government consented to the independent School Teachers’ Review Body’s (STRB) recommendations to increase wages by 6.5%.
NEU’s decision brings a close to a longstanding feud that pushed teachers out of their classes for eight days, shuttering many state educational institutions as a result.
A joint statement from the Secretary-Generals of the National Education Union read that, “As a democratic union, the NEU leadership promised members that any pay and funding offer given by government that warranted their consideration would be put to them. Members have spoken very clearly and in great numbers.”
“The NEU submissions to the STRB went a long way towards changing the government’s position on pay and funding. The strike action taken by our members also shifted the dial, securing the highest pay award for more than 30 years. Members should be proud they have also secured extra funding for schools.”Secretary-Generals of National Education Union.
The secretaries further expounded that, accepting the governments offer does not put an end to the union’s campaign for a better-funded education system, adding that, the administration must be prepared to “hold its feet to the fire” and render the necessary support to teachers.
“It remains the view of the NEU that school and college funding is far from adequate. It remains a commitment of the NEU to campaign for further increases in teacher pay.
“Everyone in the school and colleges community deserves an education system that attracts and keeps teaching staff, and one that ensures every child gets the attention and support they deserve.”Secretary-Generals of National Education Union.
According to the results released by the Education Union, with a turnout of 60%, 80% of teachers voted to agree to the government pay offer and put an end to the strike action.
According to vote cast, members who voted to prolong the strike amounted to 25,541(14%), whiles the other 154,987 (86%), chose to “accept the offer as progress made by our actions” and agreed to cease the strike.
On the other hand, the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT), announced that, 77.6% of its member have agreed to the government’s 6.5% salary increment. The group also pleaded to the government to put in place measures that will elevate the stress of excessive working hours.
Before the government revised its previously proposed offer, the Members of the National Education Union put to vote their decision to prolong their strike action. Majority of the members agreed to prolong the strike action, till the government offered a better offer.
In the same vein, with the approval of the administrations proposed teachers’ funding and salaries for the next academic calendar, the Association of Schools and Colleges leaders, have called of their strike action.
The government however, has promised to increase its funding for schools with 525 million pounds for the 2023-2024 academic calendar, and a 900 million pound in 2024-2025 school. This pronouncements come in the wake of concerns raised by some teacher over how the 6.5% salary increase would be funded.
Gillian Keegan, the Education Secretary hailed the unions decision as a good news for parents, students, and teacher.
“The deal brings an end to the disruption faced by parents and young people, and means we can focus on what matters most giving our children a world-class education.”Gillian Keegan, Education Secretary.
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