Teachers to suspend strike after meeting with Education Minister

Deputy Head of Independent Teachers Syndicate Ayman al-Bayali said Monday that protesting teachers will suspend their strike for 15 days until the government responds to their demands.

During a meeting with Education Minister Ibrahim Ghoneim and members of the Syndicate, Bayali threatened that teachers will strike again if their demands weren’t met.

He added that the terms of employment and wages will be submitted to the Cabinet for discussions that will be concluded in 15 days and then referred to the president.

Bayali said that the Education Ministry refused to raise the wages 50 percent until the Cabinet discusses the term.

He said that the meeting and negotiations with the Education Minister came as a result of the strike, in which over 133,000 teachers participated.

Teachers have been protesting since early September demanding better wages, the removal of corrupt figures from the ministry's different sectors and permanent employment for teachers who have temporary contracts. They have organized sit-ins at the Cabinet building in downtown Cairo, then started to strike mid-September, coinciding with the school year.

Activist movements seeking to improve conditions for teachers, including the Egyptian Teachers Union and the Independent Teachers Syndicate, called for the sit-in under the slogan “A school year without teachers.”

A nationwide teachers’ strike took place around the same time last year, with several unions participating. Labor mobilization in the public education sector has been on the rise, with some reports saying the sector saw the highest number of protests in its history last year.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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