No appetite for strike over pay deal

29th February 2008 at 00:00
There is no widespread appetite for a strike over pay, despite the majority of teachers being unhappy with the new three-year pay deal, a union poll has revealed.

Around 14,500 NASUWT members responded to a survey canvassing their views on the planned annual increases of 2.3 per cent, topped up to 2.45 per cent in the first year to allow for inflation.

The Department for Children, Schools and Families had argued for a pay rise of below 2 per cent, but ministers were forced to accept the higher proposal by the School Teachers' Review Body.

More than two-thirds of respondents to the poll said they disagreed with the Government's proposed 2008-11 deal, which includes a review at the end of 2009.

Chris Keates, general secretary of the NASUWT, said: "The poll results indicate that teachers have recognised that compared to other public sector workers they have fared relatively well. But there is deep concern about the Government's approach to pay matters.

"There is no widespread appetite for industrial action but there is a strong message to the Government that teachers should not be taken for granted."

The NASUWT poll comes at the same time that another union, the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, received a similar result from members. "They were overwhelmingly against industrial action," said a spokeswoman.

The NUT has balloted its members over a possible one-day strike on April 24. Ballot papers went out yesterday and are due to be returned by March 31. If the strike proceeds, it will be the first national teachers' strike for 20 years.

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