Teachers’ strike action closes schools’ doors

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SEVERAL schools across the Advertiser region were closed either completely or partially yesterday, Thursday due to strike action.

Although there were almost no picket lines in the region yesterday, striking teachers were believed to have made their protest at home or had joined the thousands of public sector workers marching through London protesting against a cut in public sector pensions and a rise in retirement age.

Around 40 per cent of state schools were closed across the country as members of the National Union of Teachers and the Association of Teachers and Lecturers took part in the strike.

A single striker with placard was reported at the entrance to Royal Latin School in the morning but had left by the early afternoon.

In a statement, RLS said the school was partially closed due to strike action by members of the NUT and ATL but pupils in years seven and eight had lessons as normal.

The statement added: “We will be open as normal on Friday and apologise for any inconvenience.”

Buckingham School was open as normal as well as many other primary and secondary schools across the region.

In Brackley staff at Magdalen College School were also on strike with only year 12 students in lessons.

Ron Sawbridge, Northants County Councillor for Brackley East and vice chairman of the MSC governors said the strike was unfortunate.

He added: “The problem being experienced throughout the county does make it necessary to reduce the large debts we have and we can not go on funding expensive pensions schemes which are far better than the private sector.

“We have to cut our cloth according to the amount of money we have and get this debt down.

“The strike has caused a lot of inconvenience to people who have children at home today, particularly those families with two working parents.”

Parents gave a mixed reaction; one who asked not to be named, said: “I think they should do their jobs and put the kids’ interests first.”

Mum Wendy McAllister was reserving judgement on the strike but added: “They’re getting a reduced pension and they are being made to work longer, I think it’s the only option they’ve got.”

Other schools which were closed included Buckingham Primary School, Furze Down (partial), Roundwood (partial), St James and St John, Cosgrove, Deanshanger (partial), Gayton (partial), Helmdon, Kingsbrook, Nicholas Hawksmoor (partial), Paulerspury and Stoke Bruerne.