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Thames Valley teachers are planning to strike again on May 11. File Photo: GORDON PREECE

New strike planned for secondary and area school teachers

Secondary and area school teachers will return to the streets as part of a nationwide strike on March 29.

The move comes after members of the Post Primary Teachers’ Association (PPTA) voted overwhelmingly in favour of more industrial action in support of its collective agreements for better salaries and working conditions. 

Primary and kindergarten teachers, who participated in the previous nationwide teachers strike on March 16, won’t join the March 29 strike.

President Chris Abercrombie said the ballot results showed that members believed the “time for words from the government had passed”. 

“Teachers would much prefer to be teaching in a settled environment this year, rather than taking extensive industrial action. However, we cannot stand by when the future of secondary education is at stake,” he said.

“We need a commitment from the government to collective agreements that will ensure students have specialist teachers for every subject. 

“We need pay and conditions that will keep teachers in the classroom, attract graduates into teaching and encourage ex teachers to return to the profession.”

The union said strikes would also continue during the second term which begins on April 24. 

“In the second week of next term, PPTA members will put in place a plan to roster different year levels of students home on various days for four weeks.” 

 “In the third week of Term 2, the week beginning May 8, they will hold rolling strikes, where teachers will strike on different days in different regions, starting at one end of the motu [island] and finishing at the other.”

The union said members will also continue refusing to give up their scheduled planning and marking time to relieve vacant positions or absent teachers.