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Teachers to be balloted over strike action over States pay offer

Credit: PA Images

Teachers and other education professionals will be balloted about whether they want to strike over the public sector pay offer.

The National Association of Head Teachers union says the offer put forward by the States represents a pay cut in real terms.

The States' Chief Executive has previously said "there is no more money" to offer to civil servants.

The offer, which is below RPI, does not take into consideration the work teachers do, according to the union's Jersey President.

School leaders are usually a cooperative, reserved group.

We have not been prone to air our disputes in public, preferring to work through challenges behind closed doors.

But we’ve had enough.

We’ve had enough of being taken for granted.

We’ve had enough of being told, year after year, that despite our important work and the fact that educational standards are rising in Jersey, we’re not worth the cost of living again.

And again. And again.

– Sam Cooper, NAHT Branch President for Jersey

The States of Jersey have responded by saying they highly value the work of teachers and hope they can still reach an agreement.

This pay offer, which was approved by the States Employment Board, is intended to achieve the best deal possible, tackle equal pay issues and raise the incomes of the lowest-paid. It represents a £27.4 million increase in total pay costs for the States, plus a further £6.2 million in one-off lump sums in 2018 and 2019. That’s on top of the existing £359 million pay bill.

– States of Jersey

They continued saying that there was a duty to taxpayers to ensure all governmental budgets could be afforded.

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