School closures as teachers strike

�Most schools in Havering were closed yesterday (Thursday) as teachers joined one of the biggest strikes in decades.

Pupils and parents were facing a day of disruption as a result of the strike.

There were 13 closures, and seven part closures of schools.

The National Union of Teachers walked out over the government’s plans to change teachers’ pension schemes which means they will have to work for longer, pay more and receive less when they retire.

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Most of the 1,300 NUT members in the borough were expected to be on strike in addition to members from the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) and the University and College Union (UCU)

Sue Kortlandt, joint secretary of the Havering Association of NUT, said the strike had been the last resort because the government was not listening to members.

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She said teachers expect a secure job and a secure pension when they go into the job.

She added: “The government has not moved sufficiently in negotiations and they don’t look like they will.

“Most people have been very supportive of what we are doing.”

Also striking were tax office workers at Queen’s Moat House, in Romford, and Job Centre workers at both Romford and Hornchurch.

All are members of the PCS civil service union which is also against proposed changes to pensions and pay.

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