Education General News International

Secondary School Teachers Strike in Protest over Alleged Unfair Dismissal of Teacher Involved in Student Fight: Swansea

Pre-Tertiary Teacher Unions End Two-Week Strike Call for Urgent Negotiations

On Thursday, secondary school teachers in Swansea went on strike following the alleged dismissal of a teacher who intervened in a fight between two students.

The NASUWT teaching union, representing the teachers, reported that its members had voted overwhelmingly in favor of the industrial action. As a result, over half of Swansea’s secondary schools closed for the day, while others operated with partial closures.

Metro Lens

Swansea Council expressed its “extreme disappointment” with the union’s decision and denied allegations of mistreatment, victimization, or non-compliance with employment agreements. The NASUWT emphasized that the decision to strike was not taken lightly and warned of further action if necessary.

Neil Butler, the NASUWT’s national official for Wales, stressed the importance of teachers feeling supported when intervening in violent incidents to ensure their own safety and that of their students. He accused Swansea Council of disregarding its own policies and failing to uphold collective agreements with the NASUWT.

Helen Johns, the NASUWT’s national executive member for Swansea, criticized the ineffective nature of talks with Swansea Council, stating that the breach was a result of the council’s baseless interference in a school process.

The dispute revolves around an incident in which a male teacher separated two male students involved in a physical altercation. According to the union, the teacher faced disciplinary measures, but after appealing twice, he was eventually dismissed.

A spokesperson for Swansea Council argued that the strike would deprive children of educational opportunities and refuted any claims of mistreatment or non-compliance with employment agreements, calling for evidence to support such allegations.

The council stated that it had been in regular communication with the union and had met four out of the five requirements presented to resolve the dispute. However, the council refrained from commenting on the specifics of the individual case due to legal considerations.

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