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Education sector remains Czech coalition’s priority

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Prague, June 8 (CTK) – All Czech government coalition parties, the Social Democrats (CSSD), ANO and Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL), called the education sector their priority at their meeting on the budget this morning, Education Ministry spokeswoman Jarmila Balazova told CTK yesterday.
The government is yet to debate particular sums and percent by which the teachers’ salaries would rise, she added.
The school sector trade unions insist on a 10-percent rise in the salaries of teachers and other school employees.
The pay rise of both groups will be dealt with separately.
The teachers’ salaries may rise more than those of other professions, Balazova noted.
Apart from the 10-percent pay rise, which Education Minister Katerina Valachova and PM Bohuslav Sobotka (both CSSD) support, there is also an alternative “plan B” of a 5-percent pay rise in 2017 with planned further rises in 2018 and 2019.
However, the trade unions have raised objections to it.
Valachova also asks for additional finances from the budget for her sector, for instance to cover expenditures connected with a higher number of schoolchildren. She demands at least 6.9 billion crowns extra for regional schools and another one billion for universities.
Since the Coalition Council did not have enough time to go through other urgent issues in the morning, it will meet again to debate the budget on June 15, that is before the next lower house session.
($1=23.815 crowns)

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