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First up, strikes. We asked for your thoughts on the current situation. Over 4,500 of you responded – thank you. Given the high proportion of teachers who voted to strike, we weren’t surprised that a majority of your comments supported action. “Up the workers!” was one favourite. Other favourable comments included a teacher who expressed “Huge support – pay and conditions have been awful for too long.” Another teacher described strikes as “A necessity if we want the best for children and teachers.” A fourth said it was a shame things had come to this, but that “It’s about time that government listened. We can’t keep being overlooked and to agree a pay rise without funding it is appalling and affects all stakeholders.”

Yet many teachers tempered their support for action with worries or regrets. One Tappster put it succinctly: “Valid, necessary, but sad.” Others detailed the conflicts they perceived. One said they were in “two minds”: “I promote the strikes, yet equally can’t afford to strike due to losing a full day’s pay.” Another felt it was a “hard call”: “Government need to take action but children shouldn’t have to suffer.” Newer teachers mentioned uncertainty about what to do: one felt “Very confused what to do as an ECT in a new job!” A teacher who isn’t eligible to strike told us they “really support the pay strikes on principle but it is difficult to square the impact on learners and striking teachers’ pay docking in the cost of living crisis. Sympathies all round.”

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