Wednesday 21 October 2020

Teachers to strike on Friday, hundreds of schools to close

Photo: Robin Utrecht via HH

Primary and secondary schools across the country will be closed on Friday as teachers go on strike in support of better working conditions and more pay.

The nationwide teachers strike is the third in two years and comes on top of several regional strikes throughout the country last year. It has been called by the Aob teaching union and the FNV.

Kim van Strien, is a French teacher in Katwijk and a member of Teachers in Action, told DutchNews.nl: ‘We’re doing something important and that needs to be recognised.’

Not all teachers support the strike, however, and the CNV-affiliated teaching union does not plan to join in, pending the outcome of current negotiations with the government.

In total, teachers are asking the government to increase spending on education by €4bn, of which €560m would go on bringing primary school salaries into line with secondary schools.

Other funding would go to providing additional support staff and reducing the workload of teachers.

Teacher shortages are a problem in the Netherlands, with some schools dropping classes because they can no longer find teachers to teach them.

Other school districts have considered shortening the school week and have even resorted to having parents and civil servants serve as substitutes when there are not enough teachers to cover the classes.

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