Teachers agree to national strike vote after the election


Children could face classroom disruption as teachers backed calls for a ballot by the NUT on strike action over Government funding cuts.

They have given the next government a six month deadline to increase funding for schools in England and Wales or face walk-outs because of the threat of looming cuts.

They are concerned that the cuts faced by schools will damage pupils' education, lead to job losses and hit teachers' pay, pensions and work load.

The priority motion expresses concerns about school spending and urges political parties to make clear commitments to protect funding in the future.

It calls for an incoming government to be set a deadline of the autumn statement, adding that if there is no clear pledge to properly protect budgets at that stage, then the union should look at triggering a ballot on industrial action, including strikes.

As well as dealing with real-term cuts since 2010, from this September schools will also have to find more money for increases in pensions and National Insurance costs, as well as coping with continuing rises in pupil numbers, the union has said.

Jerry Glazier of the NUT's executive, said: "Austerity damages children's education, austerity damages children's life chances and austerity damages those who are most vulnerable in society, and particularly those vulnerable children.

"The priority motion is a crucial component of our our ongoing pay, pensions and workload campaign. Failure to fund schools properly will directly, negatively impact on pay, directly negatively impact on pensions and directly negatively impact on the workload of teachers."

A Conservative Party spokesman said: "The NUT leadership’s irresponsible motion shows how out of touch they are with parents and children across the country. We have had to make difficult decisions to tackle the record deficit we inherited, but we have protected spending on schools in real terms and spending per pupil has gone up over the course of this Parliament."

Ed Miliband has said that if his Labour come into power in the May General election they would increase spending by at least the rate of inflation.

The Liberal Democrats said they would ringfence education spending for two to 19-year-olds, currently it is only protected for children aged five to 16 years. Nick Clegg's party claim this would safeguard an additional £10billion.

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