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Teachers strike to support kids, parents and communities

6 December 2012
Immediate Release

Teachers plan strike to support kids, parents and communities

Teachers and school support staff in Christchurch have been forced into giving notice of strike action because of the ongoing serious concerns for Christchurch children and the future of their education.

NZEI Te Riu Roa Te Riu Roa National President Ian Leckie says the decision to give notice of strike was backed by an overwhelming majority of teachers at yesterday’s mass meeting and shows the level of concern about the Government’s education agenda.

“Teachers and support staff do not threaten industrial action lightly. It has been many years since primary teachers have been out on strike and this is certainly not about any personal gain. They have been forced into this in order to protect the education of children.

“Teachers, with the support of their school communities, have now reached the point where they believe that there is no other alternative to strike action. The Government is not listening and is going down a very dangerous path for Christchurch education.

“Neither the Minister of Education nor the Ministry have been able to explain why Christchurch kids are being the guinea pigs for a radical reform of education that goes way beyond restoring earthquake affected schools.

“Why is Christchurch being earmarked for mega-sized schools, double-bunking and charter schools?”

“It seems clear that this is the beginning of major changes that the Government would eventually like to roll out in the rest of the country.

Mr Leckie says the Government now needs to go back and consult properly and this time it needs to put children at the centre of its education planning.

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