Norway’s teachers may strike for months

Every day of the teacher's strike is costing Norway 10 million kroner ($1.62 million) a day, and with the teachers' unions holding over 700 million kroner ($115 million) in account, the action could continue for many months.

Norway's teachers may strike for months
Norway's schoolchildren face an uncertain future as the teachers strike continues.Photo: Shutterstock

The Union of Education Norway promised before the strikes began, no member of their union would lose on salary if they strike. The union now has a bill of 10 million kroner ($1.62 million) per day,

Yet with a bank balance of  730 million kroner ($120 million) and equity of just under one billion kroner, the Union of Education Norway can afford the cost. So far, the conflict has cost an estimated 75 million kroner ($12 million), said Aftenposten.
The costs to the teachers' unions are not as much as the savings of the municipalities during the strike. Schools save on the expense of teacher salaries as well as employer fees. 
Ragnhild Lied, leader of the Union of Education Norway, would not comment on how much money is in the strike account, or how quickly it will become depleted.
She said: “We are experienced when it comes to striking and we can calculate the withdrawals in regard to a long-lasting strike.”

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Norway’s teachers’ strike over as unions agree

Agreement has been reached about teachers' working hours, ending the strikes that have disrupted Norway for over two weeks, it was announced on Monday.

Norway's teachers' strike over as unions agree
Pupils return to Norway schools from Tuesday after teachers' conflicts resolved. Photo: Shutterstock

Unions agreed to a solution for the debated teachers' working hours over the weekend and the outcome that the strike will end was announced at a press conference on Monday morning at 8.30am.

KS finally agreed to the teachers' unions demands about working hours, said Skolenes Landsforbund (National Association of Schools).
Anne Finborud, leader of Skolenes Landsforbund, said to NTB: “The agreement on the table now is significantly improved from the one we voted down in May, especially on working hours. This is where KS has been forced to retreat. We are still not completely satisfied and think that on some points the agreement is worse than today's agreement.”
Today's agreement on working hours will be in effect from one year ahead. The new agreement will not entail more working hours in schools, without local agreement.
The majority of the board of Skolenes Landsforbund voted for the agreement at the weekend. This offer will also be put to the union members' vote.
The solution of the conflict states that if the parties don't agree on working hours, the case will be brought further to an arbitration system within the local municipal government. If the parts cannot agree in this instance, today's agreement will then apply.
Finborud said: “This conflict has shown that KS obviously does not have the necessary competence to run schools. Now the municipalities, as school owners, have to listen to the teachers locally and contribute to build up the trust that KS has torn down.”
The partiesin the teacher conflict sat together until late on the night to Sunday, according to NTB.
More than 100,000 student at more than 200 schools were affected by the strike, but from Tuesday all pupils will return to their schools.