VOTE: Are teachers right to consider strike action?

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TEACHERS could walk out of the classrooms this summer in a joint walkout to defend their pension rights.

On Tuesday the annual conference of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers backed a call for a strike ballot.

But the leadership says it will plan the ballot with other teachers’ unions.

The ATL, recognised as a moderate union, has never held a national strike before but its annual conference in Liverpool voted for a strike ballot in protest at proposed changes to public sector pensions.

The union says this could mean a one-day walk-out in the summer term and days of action in the autumn.

The conference heard calls for industrial action against public sector pension changes which could mean working longer and reduced benefits.

The strike ballot motion said the changes will include raising the retirement age to 68 and the replacement of the final salary scheme with a career average scheme, which would mean a lower pension for many teachers.

The union says that the proposed public sector pension changes would see teachers on average losing 25% of the value of their pension.