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Strikes paused for primary teachers

A planned strike has been called off by NZEI Te Riu Roa primary school teachers as negotiations for a collective agreement continue.

Primary teachers from the NZEI Te Riu Roa education union have called off their planned strike action on Wednesday 31 May.  

The news follows last week’s announcement that industrial action would be paused as negotiations continued with the Ministry of Education for a new collective agreement.  

Education Minister Jan Tinetti met with both NZEI Te Riu Roa and PPTA Te Wehengarua representatives on Friday 19 May, which was described in a press release as “constructive”. Under this agreement, all strike notices were suspended until Tuesday 30 May.  

It’s now been announced that Minister of Finance Grant Robertson will meet with union representatives on Tuesday to discuss a settlement. The terms of this agreement will be confirmed later that day and taken to teachers on Wednesday.  

Although strike action will not continue, NZEI Te Riu Roa has noted that schools may close on Wednesday afternoon for paid union meetings.  

If the new proposal is again rejected, union members will vote on whether to continue with industrial action, though any further strikes won’t take place until mid-June.  

Update: it’s now been announced that most primary schools will close on the afternoon of Wednesday 31 May for paid union meetings. Usually NZEI Te Riu Roa must give two weeks notice for union meetings but due to the strike having been planned for that day, the usual rule has been waived. 

Naomii Seah

Naomii Seah is a writer and journalist from Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, Aotearoa New Zealand. She enjoys crochet, painting, and a coffee or two at the beach. Her work can be found at The Spinoff, The Pantograph Punch, Stuff, and of course, School News NZ.
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