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'We share the same issues' - Area schools vote to join largest nationwide teachers' strike

Area school teachers, represented by NZEI and PPTA, have overwhelmingly voted in favour of joining strike action next Wednesday.

The nationwide strike is the largest education strike in New Zealand’s history and the first time all teachers in the compulsory schooling sector have taken strike action simultaneously.

About 2300 teachers work in 136 area schools and wharekura throughout the country, teaching students from primary age through to secondary.

PPTA President Jack Boyle says: "The issues facing area school teachers are the same as for every other teacher in New Zealand.

"Teachers are dealing with excessive workloads, long hours, unnecessary red tape and box ticking – and a salary that’s turning people away from the profession."

Area school teacher Lagi Leilua, who is also on the NZEI/PPTA negotiation team, says the Ministry’s failure to put forward an offer was "disrespectful" to area school teachers.

"Area school teachers are suffering unsustainable workloads and we need pay and conditions that will keep and attract people into the profession.

"We will be joining our primary and secondary colleagues on strike and in the streets on 29 May because we share the same issues and face the same challenges."

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A strike of about 50,000 teachers will walk out at the end of May. Source: 1 NEWS