North East schools face closures and university lectures cancelled amid nationwide teaching strikes

Written by on 2nd February 2023

A whole host of North East educational facilities have been impacted as a result of the ongoing teaching strikes that have seen numerous schools closed and lectures postponed.

Unions claim that the action is in response to teaching salaries not keeping up with the rate of inflation despite the cost of living crisis the country is currently facing. 

Steve Cannon, a senior lecturer at the University of Sunderland and rep of the University and College Union (UCU) expressed the importance behind the decisions made by teachers across the country.

He said: “The crucial thing is that our pay and conditions are in a severe downward spiral. No inflation-matching pay ‘rise’ since 2009. Massively increased workloads associated with online delivery and increased levels of student support and the final straw was coming out of lockdown, where our work saved the day, they offered us 3% when inflation was in double figures.”

“Enough is enough!”

The first of seven planned school strike dates took place on Wednesday, February 1 with more than 700,000 students off school and 85% of schools were either fully or partially closed, in England and Wales, as more than 100,000 teachers partook in the strike.

Other dates of future strike action within schools include:

  • Tuesday, February 14 – Wales
  • Tuesday, February 28 – Northern, North West, Yorkshire and The Humber
  • Wednesday, March 1 – East Midlands, West Midlands, Eastern
  • Thursday, March 2 – London, South West, South East
  • Wednesday, March 15 – England and Wales
  • Thursday, March 16 – England and Wales

University lecturers from Sunderland, Teesside, Northumbria and Newcastle will also take part in strike action over 18 days between now and the end of March.

Dates include:

  • Thursday, February 9
  • Friday, February 10
  • Tuesday, February 14
  • Wednesday, February 15
  • Thursday, February 16
  • Tuesday, February 21
  • Wednesday, February  22
  • Thursday, February 23
  • Monday, February 27
  • Tuesday, February 28
  • Wednesday, March 1
  • Thursday, March 2
  • Thursday, March 16
  • Friday, March 17
  • Monday, March 20
  • Tuesday, March 21
  • Wednesday, March 22

A spokesman for the University of Sunderland said: “The University has received formal notification of the planned industrial action by UCU and we are taking all reasonable steps to mitigate the impact of this on our students and any other scheduled activities at the University.”

A full list of North East based schools affected by the strikes can be found here.

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