RIGA - The government plans to allocate another EUR 4.2 million to meet teachers' strike demands, Education and Science Minister Anda Caksa (New Unity) told LETA.
This sum will be allocated in addition to the planned EUR 9,039,833 earmarked by the approved Cabinet of Ministers regulations on April 21. Financing will be used to increase wages also of those teachers whose rate is over the minimum wage.
The Latvian Trade Union of Education and Science Employees (LIZDA) and the Education and Science Ministry by yesterday evening were of different opinions whether the government has met the strike demands - the ministry said that financing has been allocated to increase the lowest wages, but the trade union insisted that all wages should be raised.
LIZDA chairwoman Inga Vanaga said that the latest ministry's offer meets the demands, but final opinion will be given after the trade union has got acquainted with full information provided by the ministry as the trade union received some of the calculations just shortly before the meeting.
Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins (New Unity) said after the meeting with representatives of the ministry and the trade union that even though the government budget has been rearranged for the benefit of the education sector, many individual complaints of teachers will remain unsolved because local governments need to optimize the school network.
Caksa also told LETA that local governments are in charge of use of the allocated funding in order to ensure that teachers' wages are higher.
LIZDA council will convene for an extraordinary meeting on Tuesday evening to decide on further steps.
As reported, several thousand education employees in Riga on Monday took part in a protest demonstration, demanding a "respectful and responsible" treatment. The teachers' demonstration was joined by many health care employees. The demonstration kicked off three days of a nationwide teachers' strike.