Teachers and their supporters gathered in front of the Riigikogu on Thursday in protest against the small pay rise proposed during state budget negotiations.
The Estonian Educational Personnel Union (EEPU) opposes the government's decision to give teachers only a 1.77 percent pay rise next year and has approached the public conciliator to discuss ways forward, including a potential general strike.
The union would be willing to call off a potential strike even if teachers' minimum wages rise by eight percent or less next year, as long as a specific pay increase for the coming years is agreed.
Negotiations involving the public conciliator, education workers, Minister of Education Kristina Kallas (Eesti 200) and local authorities are ongoing.
The earliest a strike by teachers could take place would be the penultimate week of November.
Nevertheless, a demonstration in support of the teachers still took place on Thursday in front of the Riigikogu. The demonstration was attended by representatives of organizations from different spheres, with the aim of sending the message that teachers' pay has to be normalized.
The demonstration was attended by members of the Estonian Rescue Association, the Estonian Medical Association, the Estonian Union of Health Professionals, the Estonian Association of Engineers, the Estonian Railway Workers' Union, the Union of Academic Trade Unions, the Estonian Association of School Managers, the Estonian Kindergarten Teachers Union, the Federation of Estonian Student Unions, the Estonian Parents' Association.
Editor: Michael Cole