Strike will cause ‘chaos’ as teachers get set to march

Teachers strike and protest in Portsmouth city centre last October''.''Picture: Paul Jacobs (132892-5) ENGPPP00120131017135754
Teachers strike and protest in Portsmouth city centre last October''.''Picture: Paul Jacobs (132892-5) ENGPPP00120131017135754
PCSOs and police officers around Priory School this afternoon

Police speak to school after fight in Southsea play park

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A WARNING has been made to expect ‘chaos’ as teachers get set to strike again.

Dozens of schools in the area will close or face major disruption on Wednesday as members of The National Union of Teachers (NUT) take industrial action over government changes to the education system.

The NUT has called the strike in response to Education Secretary Michael Gove’s reforms, which many teachers claim is ruining Britain’s school system.

Teachers went on strike in October last year but will now take more action for what they perceive as a lack of response from Mr Gove.

NUT Portsmouth branch secretary Amanda Martin said she knew the action would inconvenience parents, but strikes were the only thing Mr Gove seemed to take notice of.

She said: ‘It’s going to create some chaos and we don’t take the decision lightly. I ask parents to have a look into why we’re doing this and what we’re trying to protect.

‘We need to highlight what’s going on.’

Striking teachers plan to meet outside Debenhams in Commercial Road, Portsmouth and march through the city centre at midday.

Ms Martin said the action was in response to worsening pay and pension conditions and the general direction education is going in.

Ms Martin said: ‘What we’re trying to do is convince parents of what’s really happening to education in this country.’

Cllr Rob Wood, Portsmouth City Council cabinet member for children and education, said: ‘I understand that they have an issue but I would prefer that they didn’t strike.’

Retired teacher Barrie Smith, 74, of Gosport, said: ‘Mr Gove is trying to set teachers and schools up against each other by bringing in different holiday times for schools and different pay scales for teachers.’

Another teachers’ union, the NASUWT, will not join the strike.

The union’s Portsmouth secretary Sion Reynolds said: ‘We’re holding fire, really. At least now Gove is willing to address our concerns. Until recently he was fobbing us off with excuses.’

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