EIS to Escalate Strikes to Include Targeted Action

Created on: 07 Feb 2023 | Last modified: 09 Nov 2023

Today, 7 February, marks one whole year since Scottish teaching unions submitted their pay claim for 2022-23 via the Scottish Negotiating Committee for Teachers (SNCT).

A year on, that pay claim remains unsettled and teachers across the country are engaged in a programme of industrial action in pursuit of a fair pay settlement.

As a result, the EIS has announced an escalation of its action to include targeted strike action in schools within the constituencies of key decision makers within the Scottish Government and COSLA.

EIS Office Bearers and other senior EIS Representatives will take part in photo calls outside the Scottish Government and COSLA HQ in Edinburgh at 3pm today, delivering Birthday cards to mark the 1st anniversary of the teachers' pay claim being submitted.

Commenting, EIS General Secretary Andrea Bradley said, "It is deeply regrettable that the continuing inaction, obfuscation and spin from the Scottish Government and COSLA on teachers' pay has led to an escalation of our programme of strike action.

"It has now been a year since our pay claim was submitted, and teachers should have had their pay rise in their pay packet last April. Instead, the Scottish Government and COSLA initially offered a pathetic 2% pay settlement - at a time when inflation was nearly four times that amount.

"Since then, the Scottish Government and COSLA have dithered, delayed and dragged their feet while the cost of living has continued to soar."

Ms Bradley added, "The latest offer, for a well-below inflation 5%, has now been kicking around for six months and has been rejected by Scotland's teachers twice. Our members have already taken part in three days of national strike action, and a further 16-days of rolling action across the country.

"The response from the Scottish Government and COSLA has been, essentially, nil – and this now has forced an escalation in our action. The offer of a 9% real-terms pay cut, which is what is on the table, will never be acceptable."

The escalation of action means that, in addition to 2 days of national strike action already called for 28th February and 1st March, and a 20 further days of rolling strikes across all local authority areas from 13th March until 21st April, there will be targeted action in the constituencies of the First Minister, Deputy First Minster, Cabinet Secretary for Education, and COSLA Resources Spokesperson, Councillor Katie Hagmann.

Scottish Greens Education Spokesperson Ross Greer's East Dunbartonshire constituency area will also be targeted.

EIS members in four of these five areas will be called out on three consecutive days from Wednesday, 22nd February – Friday, 24th February inclusive.

All five areas will be targeted for a further three days of action from Tuesday, 7th March. Precise details of the schools involved in this action on the relevant dates will be published shortly.

Further periods of targeted action are likely, if no new pay offer is forthcoming.