Mário Nogueira, secretary-general of Fenprof
Mário Nogueira, secretary-general of Fenprof vowing "new forms of struggle" unless government stops sitting on its hands

Teachers threaten “new forms of struggle” if government fails to act

… while parents everywhere run out of patience

With schools up and down the country disrupted for yet another day in the stand off between the country’s teachers and a government unprepared to meet them until next week, FENPROF (the federation of teaching syndicates) has threatened “new forms of struggle” if solutions are not forthcoming at the meeting scheduled for January 20.

He told reporters today: “What we would like is that the meeting on the 20th isn’t just a meeting, but that the education ministry accepts to truly negotiate. This is all in the hands of the minister of education” – a man so ‘out of the news headlines’ that frustrated parents remark they don’t even know what he looks like.

Last night, the teachers’ struggle saw the camp outside the ministry of education in Lisbon filled with at least 80 protestors, all of them prepared to sleep rough in order to make their points. 

Monday is due to see the start of ‘district strikes’ throughout mainland territory: meaning different districts will strike on different days.

A protest is also planned for Lisbon next Monday, while everyday citizens (mothers, fathers particularly) showed last night they have simply had enough.

Protests in Lisbon and Porto brought almost 2,000 people out onto the streets, ostensibly demonstrating against the series of scandals and ‘cases’ within the Socialist government that appear to have led to it totally losing sight of what is happening in the country.

Parents whose children’s schools are closed have been left with no alternative but to ‘take time off work’, which in many cases means ‘lose money’ at a point where, at best, money isn’t buying what families need…

The government’s rough ride meantime is continuing in the press – with yet another ‘scandal’ rolled out in time for the evening news (see top story to come), as well as a ‘new resignation’ among the ranks.

natasha.donn@portugalresident.com