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Teachers to vote over strikes during exam period

A strike by teachers in senior schools across the island during the exam period will be put to a referendum later in the month to decide how to proceed, head of Oelmek Costas Hadjisavvas said on Friday.

According to Hadjisavvas, the decision was taken based on a vote that took place in February 2018, when 76 per cent of teachers voted against the implementation of four-monthly exams and a recent meeting with teachers all over Cyprus, who asked for the right to protest against them.

“Our goal is not to strike, but I had to respect the unions’ demand for a referendum,” Hadjisavvas said. This will go ahead on November 11.

The four monthly exams will be introduced for students currently in the first grade of lyceum only, those in other grades will continue with the once yearly exams.

The first four-monthly exams are expected to take place from December 9 to December 19, according to Hadjisavvas, however teachers might not strike during the full ten days, he added.

“The details of the possible strike will be decided later,” said Hadjisavvas and noted that technical schools will not participate in it.

Oelmek met with the ministry of education on October 10 after a strike on September 25 in protest over various issues in the education system.

“The meeting only lasted 25-30 minutes and we simply just expressed our main issues, including the new evaluation system but no decisions were taken,” explained Hadjisavas.

“Unfortunately, the issues schools face are many, not just one,” said Hadjisavvas and gave as an example the huge amount of material teachers and students struggle to cover every year.


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