Following on the failure of negotiations on a new collective agreement for secondary school teachers, EI’s national affiliate, the Kennarasamband Islands (KI), called on its members, upper secondary teachers employed by the state, to go on strike on 17 March.
KI organises upper secondary schools, including vocational education teachers, employed by the state at the national level, as well as early childhood and primary school teachers covered by separate collective agreements and employed at a different level.
The previous agreement for secondary school teachers expired on 31 January 2014 and, after 30 bargaining meetings which started on 22 November 2013 without reaching an agreement, the strike was called for and started on the morning of 17 March.
This strike aims to improve secondary teachers’ salaries. According to KI, teachers now earn an average of 17 per cent less than other groups of university educated workers in the state public sector.
KI underlined that the collective agreement is not only about improving teachers’ wages, but also enhancing education and school environments for the good of society. In order for generations who will inherit the country to receive the education they are entitled to, teachers must have fair and just wages and safe working environments, the unions added.
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