One-day strike is ‘just the start’

Todmorden High School is one of many schools in Calderdale which will be closed on Tuesday, October 1, due to strike action
Todmorden High School is one of many schools in Calderdale which will be closed on Tuesday, October 1, due to strike action

Many schools in the upper Calder Valley will be closed on Tuesday due to industrial action by the country’s two biggest teaching unions.

Ninety per cent of teachers in Calderdale will not be at work on October 1 as the National Union of Teachers and the NASUWT have announced plans to hold a one-day strike.

The two unions are in dispute with the government over changes to pay and pensions, and excessive workloads.

Sue McMahon, of Calderdale NUT, said teachers are getting more concerned about the damage they feel the changes will cause to education.

“Reluctantly teachers are being forced by the Secretary of State, Michael Gove, to take strike action,” she said.

“He needs to sit down and talk and, most importantly, listen to teachers because this is only the start of industrial action. It’s going to escalate.”

Among the schools which will be closed are Todmorden High and Calder High School..

Calder High’s headteacher Tony Guise said: “I am sorry for the inconvenience caused and we must hope that the issues over which the industrial action has arisen are resolved as soon as possible.”

Several of the upper Calder Valley primary schools have also announced a one-day closure on Tuesday should the planned strike go ahead.

These include Shade Primary School and St Joseph’s Primary School in Todmorden; Walsden St Peter’s School; Old Town Primary School; Colden School; and Scout Road Academy and Burnley Road Academy in Mytholmroyd.

Union members will stage a protest in St George’s Square, Hebden Bridge, on Saturday.