Teachers' union has suspended the sanctions it has been taking for the past two weeks

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by Ifi Reporter Category:Government Jun 23, 2022

The teachers' union announced on Thursday that it has suspended the sanctions it has been taking for the past two weeks, so that classes in kindergartens and elementary schools will take place tomorrow as usual. The organization's announcement said that the sanctions were suspended at the request of Education Minister Yifat Shasha-Bitton, "and after a matter-of-fact meeting of Histadrut secretary general Yaffa Ben-David with the finance commissioner, Kobi Bar-Natan." The parties will meet again on Sunday.
Ben-David said she "hopes for continued matter-of-fact and honest negotiations with the commissioner of wages, and expects the rest of the elements in the government and the political system to also see before their eyes the good of the system." She added that "if we do not reach agreements in the coming days - we will have to resume the struggle."
Shasha-Bitton welcomed the freeze on sanctions and said that she intends to "continue to lead the rapid advancement of negotiations in order to strengthen the status of teachers, recruit teaching staff and open the school year in 2003." Finance Minister Avigdor Lieberman also welcomed the freezing of sanctions "That we continue with all our might in conducting substantive negotiations in favor of upgrading the education system."
The Teachers' Union is taking sanctions in protest of the stalemate in negotiations between it and the Ministry of Finance, over a new wage agreement for the teaching staff represented by it. The previous wage agreement expired in 2019, but negotiations on the new agreement began only last January. The Ministry of Finance wants the new agreement to reduce the pay gap between old and new teachers, while the Teachers' Union wants the salary increase to be given to all teachers. In addition, the Ministry of Finance seeks to promote the establishment of a mechanism that will allow principals to provide financial compensation to outstanding teachers, as well as a change in the vacation schedule in the education system to suit vacations in the rest of the economy. So far, Ben-David has rejected these proposals.
Today, no classes were held in kindergartens and elementary schools for the second day in a row, as part of a general strike announced by the Teachers' Union on Tuesday. Earlier, the organization suspended studies at educational institutions across the country for two hours each day, and then decided to tighten sanctions.
Despite the strike, some of the local authorities today operated the kindergartens through the daycare and assistant staff, who are not members of the teachers' union and are employed by the authorities. The authorities in which the gardens were operated include Kfar Saba, Ma'ale Adumim, Kochav Yair-Tzur Yigal, Afula, Modi'in and Tiberias. The kindergartens were opened even though the Maof Histadrut, which unites the kindergarten assistants, ordered them not to accept children to the kindergarten without the presence of a kindergarten teacher so as not to harm the teachers' strike.
The conflicting instructions led to quite a bit of confusion and frustration on the ground. In Afula, for example, municipal employees - including the mayor - came to the kindergartens to pressure the assistants to open the kindergarten gates. In Tiberias, the kindergartens remained closed in the morning, and opened only after the municipality threatened to deduct from the salaries of assistants who would not accept the children. In Modi'in, kindergarten teachers demonstrated in front of the municipality about its decision to open the kindergartens through assistants in violation of the Maof Histadrut's guidelines - and about its harm to their strike.
Yesterday, before the teachers' union announced the freezing of sanctions, Lieberman announced a move that would circumvent the strike, if it also takes place next week. According to the Ministry of Finance, it will budget NIS 130 million for activities in kindergartens and elementary schools - which will make it possible to bring forward the summer activities that are scheduled to begin on July 1. The activities will be run by daycare assistants, teachers who will be interested and external staff members.
The chairman of the Association of Education Departments in Local Authorities, Shai Fruchtman, today called on the department directors not to cooperate with the move. In a letter he distributed to principals, Fruchtman wrote that " Preparing for an adequate educational program. The school of the great freedom has an orderly educational program, while providing a response from today to Sunday is a real irresponsibility. "

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