Teachers consider more strikes

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WIGAN’S schools could be hit by another wave of strikes by teachers.

Members of two of the main teaching unions will consider an escalation of strike action over pay and pensions when they meet this weekend.

Delegates from the National Union of Teachers and the NASUWT are holding their annual conferences.

They have already taken action over pensions changes and are angry about proposals for regional pay rates.

The government says reform of public sector pensions is vital, particularly as people are living longer.

The government says the changes will not affect those within 10 years of retirement but the unions remain strongly opposed, saying their members will have to work longer for less money.

Christine Blower, general secretary of the National Union of Teachers (NUT), said teachers felt demoralised by the number of new initiatives directed at schools and by “carping” criticism.

She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “They are dispirited and angry by turn - for example being told ‘We have tolerated mediocrity for too long’ - that does not help the profession.

“Teachers are sometimes angry and dispirited but I can tell you when they get in the classroom with the kids they do a good job.”