Feb 27, 2020

Teachers to launch five day strike in March Featured

As a favourable response was not received regarding the principle issue, measures have been taken to launch a five day strike by teachers and principals from March 16 to 20, said the Ceylon Teachers' Services Union (CTSU) General Secretary Mahinda Jayasinghe.

Based on several demands, the teachers and principals of around 30 teacher unions had applied for sick leave yesterday (26) and did not report to work. As a result the functioning of many schools were stalled.

The teacher unions had taken the decision to launch the strike based on six demands such as making the teaching profession an inclusive service, the teacher-principal salary issue, allocating 6% of the budget to education, prevention of obtaining money from parents for the maintenance of schools, providing full pension to teachers who joined the service after January 01, 2016 and removal of the duties placed upon teachers illegally.

According to the Chief General Secretary of the CTSU Joseph Stalin, the strike action was a total success with around 97% of the teachers and principals not reporting to schools.

The CTSU also stated that all teachers and principals would refrain from attending any external activities of schools from 7.30 am to 1.30 pm today (27).

The teachers and principals also staged a protest opposite the Isurupaya, Education Ministry at Battaramulla near the Buddhadasa grounds yesterday. This protest was attended by around 5000 teachers and principals.

As a result of this strike the education at many schools in several provinces was hampered.

Solutions difficult – Education Minister

Meanwhile, the Education Minister Dallas Alahapperuma said that at a time when the economy is being run on an interim budget, it is difficult to resolve the salary anomalies of the teachers.

He said this during a media briefing convened at the Education Ministry yesterday.

However, the Education Minister assured that after the general election a new budget would be presented and the issues of the teachers and principals would definitely be resolved.

Minister Alahapperuma also appealed to the teachers and principals to carry out their agitation without impacting on the education of children.