The government and education unions have agreed to enter into “intensive” negotiations on reducing teacher salaries, conditions and workloads to end the school strikes, a joint statement said.
Secretary of Education Gillian Keegan and all unions (the Association of School and College Leaders, the National Association of Principals, the NASUWT, and the National Union of Education (NEU)) are meeting today to begin discussions that will continue through the weekend.
The NEU agreed to a two-week “period of calm” as it “hopes to start negotiations and reach a successful conclusion”, during which no further strike dates will be announced, the statement said. .
That means NHS nurses and paramedics will suspend strike action after months of strikes, after health unions and the government struck a groundbreaking wage deal.
Ministers hope the breakthrough will open the door for deals in other sectors where the government is an employer. A meeting could also take place this afternoon between the striking junior doctors and Health Secretary Steve Berkley.
Dr Vivek Trivedi, co-chair of the Junior Medical Association’s Board of the British Medical Association (BMA), told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, when asked if it would be possible to meet today. Our position is that we can speak honestly, meaningfully and at any time.
“We were ready to speak months ago. I’m sorry.
“So far we haven’t adjusted the hours for this afternoon, but there’s been some communication going on between our offices, so it looks like we’ll be able to set something up in the near future.”
Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab said he hoped a wage deal similar to that reached with nurses and other NHS workers on Thursday would be signed with junior doctors.
He told GB News: I think it’s right that they accept it. I think it’s fair and a good deal that they recognize the situation they’re in and the need we all have to work on the NHS backlog. ”
This story has been updated.