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Schools to shut as staff strike
12:00pm Wednesday 16th October 2013 in News
THOUSANDS of youngsters are facing a day off school tomorrow as teachers across the region strike.
Members of the NUT and NASUWT unions have called a strike over pay, pension contributions and working hours.
It has meant a large number of schools have been forced to close.
Both primary and secondary schools have been affected as headteachers have had to make a decision based on the number of union members among their staff.
They have been unable to draft in cover as other unions whose members are not striking have instructed their members not to cover lessons or take on extra duties.
As a result, many schools have asked certain year groups to stay away, while others have arranged reading sessions in place of cancelled lessons.
The council has released the results of a Department of Education survey showing the schools which will be closed on Thursday.
For the full list of schools which will be closed or partially closed click here.
As well as the teachers’ strike, the Fire Brigades Union has called for a second national strike to take place on Saturday evening.
The strike will be held between 6.30pm and 11.30pm and follows a similar strike last month over pension contributions and plans to extend the retirement age.
It is anticipated that the full time fire stations in Drove Road, Stratton and Westlea, will all be closed.
Wiltshire Fire and Rescue has put in place plans to use the retained fire service in places such as Royal Wootton Bassett to provide cover across Swindon. Chief Fire Officer Simon Routh-Jones said: “I am obviously disappointed that this national dispute between the FBU and the Government is again affecting Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service and, potentially, the communities we are here to serve.
“We are doing everything we can to maintain the best possible emergency response that we can, given that we will have reduced resources.
“During the industrial action, we will still be responding to 999 calls, but it may take us a little longer than usual to arrive “And, with larger premises, we may send a smaller attendance than usual in the first instance.
“We would therefore urge everyone to take extra care on Saturday evening.
“Our website has some helpful advice on how to keep yourself and your loved ones safe.”
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