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Teachers Begin Rolling Strikes

24 April 2002

A series of rolling strikes will begin next week as industrial action over the lack of a secondary teachers collective agreement intensifies in term two.

The strikes begin on Tuesday, April 30 and will be held over two weeks.

“What this means is that teachers in each region will strike for one day only during the two week period,” PPTA president Jen McCutcheon said.

“At this stage the strikes will go ahead. If there is any major progress made in mediation or negotiations then our executive will discuss pulling the strikes off. But as of today that is not the case,” Mrs McCutcheon said.

“We have taken a counter-proposal out to our members to vote on and the results of that will be known next week. PPTA negotiators have been in mediation all week and will go back on Friday and Monday if necessary.”

“The strikes, which are part of the national plan of action that began last term, begin on Tuesday with Hutt Valley, Central Northland, Waikato and Thames Valley secondary teachers walking off the job. On Wednesday, May 1, Auckland, Aoraki King County and Hawkes Bay teachers will strike. These strikes will involve all secondary students in those areas.”

“This action will again demonstrate how frustrated and angry teachers are at the lack of a decent collective agreement. The effects of the National Certificate of Educational Achievement are now starting to kick in and teachers are feeling the strain of dealing with the huge amount of extra work involved in that on top of their already burgeoning workload.”

“A sign from this Government that it actually cares about secondary teachers and is prepared to do something to assist them would go a long way to alleviating the feeling that secondary teachers are simply being taken for granted. More money would be a start. We are constantly being told there is no more money, but the Government seems easily able to find excess money for other things,” Mrs McCutcheon said.

Rolling strikes have also been planned for June as part of the national plan of action.

Ends

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