More than a thousand teachers in schools across Havering are gearing up for several days’ strike action over February and March. 

The National Education Union (NEU), which represents 32,000 members in 1,700 schools, earlier this month announced strikes would be taking place after a ballot in which 90.44 per cent of teacher members in England voted in favour of action.

The first strike, involving both English and Welsh teachers, is to take place on February 1, with other dates throughout February and March penned in. 

For Havering, the strike dates currently planned are on March the 2, 15 and 16, in addition to February 1. 

Teachers have so far been offered an average pay rise of 5%, with the NEU and Department for Education (DfE) officials last Friday (January 20) unable to reach an agreement to prevent the strikes going ahead. 

In Havering, 1,500 teachers are set to strike, with the local NEU branch saying it expects many schools in the borough to have to close. 

John Delaney, Havering district secretary of the NEU, said: “Our members have been pushed to the edge. They are already struggling to survive and now are being asked to take another real-terms pay cut of 7% or more.  

“Why should these conscientious educators who dedicate themselves to teaching our children have to come to work worrying if they can afford to pay the rent or mortgage or if they can afford to put the heating on at home as they mark the children’s homework?”

Romford Recorder: A list of the strikes planned for the rest of January and FebruaryA list of the strikes planned for the rest of January and February (Image: PA Graphics)

A DfE spokesperson said: “Strike action is highly damaging to children’s education, particularly following the disruption that children have experienced over the past two years. 

“We have been clear we want to support school leaders to do everything they can to keep as many children in school as possible." 

Mary Bousted, joint general secretary of the NEU, told the PA news agency that she expects more than 100,000 teachers to strike on February 1, which she said will result in “lots of schools” closing.

Romford Recorder: Mary Bousted, joint general secretary of the NEUMary Bousted, joint general secretary of the NEU (Image: PA Wire/PA Images)

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The NAHT school leaders’ union and the NASUWT teachers’ union also held ballots, but failed to get more than 50% turnouts, the benchmark for its members to go out on strike. 

Both unions are considering balloting members again over pay. 

Teachers will be joining multiple other sectors in striking in February, including ambulance workers, train drivers and nurses. 

Are you being affected by the strikes, either as a teacher or a parent? If so, get in touch at