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Cyprus Education

English School board calls on teacher to join them in a dialogue (Updated)

English School staff demonstrating on Wednesday

The board of the English School on Friday called on its staff union ESSA to start a dialogue aimed at resolving all issues concerning both parties.

The indefinite strike, which was announced on Wednesday after it emerged that the head of ESSA Myrto Hassapopoulou, who was set to be dismissed following her suspension, was also called off on Thursday after a meeting between the parties.

According to a statement released on Friday, the English School board, following negotiations with ESSA, which took place with the input of the labour ministry and the Employers and Industrialists’ Federation (OEV), has decided it will wait for the Commissioner for Data Protection’s findings before making a final decision on the matter involving Hassasopoulou.

Last week the school’s union staged an impromptu work stoppage to protest the suspension of the ESSA head after she allegedly used the school email system to send unauthorised emails to parents.

After the emails were sent, the school board announced that disciplinary action would be taken against her.

The email used the same format and letterhead as official school correspondence, which may have initially led parents to believe it was sent by the school directly instead of a union representative.

However, it was sent by Hassapopoulou in an attempt to directly address the board’s claims and explain the proposed strike action.

The statement released on Friday also said that, pending the Commissioner’s decision on the matter, the disciplinary process against the teachers who are members of the union would be suspended and it called on them to return to their duties “without fear of prejudice or future repercussions”.

Finally, the school board thanked the labour ministry and OEV “for their role in the mediation between the parties and, most importantly, the students’ parents for their patience and support.”

Last week, following her suspension, Hasapopoulou said they have been trying to establish a dialogue with the school board over unresolved issues, such as teachers’ contracts and changes to the timetable, for a long time.



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