Welwyn Hatfield and Potters Bar schools to close because of strike

PARENTS across Welwyn Hatfield and Potters Bar could be left footing the bill for childminders, or having to take the day off work tomorrow (Thursday), as teachers go on strike – but it looks like most schools will stay open.

The walkout, which has been called by the NUT and ATL trade unions in a row over pension reform, will force 10 schools in Welwyn Hatfield and Potters Bar to close.

Of those only two of the two of the 10 senior schools in our area – Monk’s Walk and Bishop’s Hatfield – look set to close.

Education Secretary Michael Gove condemned the strike – the first national walkout by teachers in 25 years.

He said: “If schools aren’t open on Thursday there will be massive inconvenience for working parents, in particular single parents, who will have to rearrange child care at very short notice.”

Christine Hood, of the NUT’s Hertfordshire branch, said the new proposals would see teachers “working longer for less”.

And a statement released by NUT and ATL union reps Alison Kelley, and Astrid Seele at Brookmans Park’s Queenswood School read: “Union members at Queenswood are very supportive of the strike action.

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“As Queenswood has a strong boarding community, the majority of staff had to reach the decision that, in the interest of pupil safety, they would refrain from actively striking on this occasion but would wear yellow to show support for striking colleagues.”

A rally will take place on Thursday morning at Campus West, WGC, in support of the strike and to protest at changes to teachers’ pensions.

The strike coincides with other public sector walkouts, but the county and borough councils insisted there would be no disruption to their services and it would be “business as usual”.

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