Teachers at Israeli Public Colleges to Strike This Week

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Sapir College in southern Israel.
Sapir College in southern Israel.Credit: Eyal Toueg

Academic staff at Israeli public colleges have declared a strike for Sunday. Senior staff will stop working indefinitely whereas junior staff will go on strike for one week.

Classes will not be held at Sapir College, Ashkelon College, Kinneret College, Ruppin Academy Center and the Holon Institute of Technology.

Senior staff only will not work at the Academic College of Tel Aviv, Afeka College of Engineering, Hadassah College of Technology, the Azrieli College of Engineering and the Heart Institute.

Junior staff only will strike at the Seminar Hakibbutzim Teachers College and the Achva Academic College.

The strike comes a week after a labor dispute was declared at 12 public colleges. A committee of college heads called on staff to avoid needless damage to students, while academic staff representatives called for renewed negotiations with the Finance Ministry and college heads.

Tel Aviv University, last week.Credit: Moti Milrod

Negotiations were underway in several colleges in an attempt to forestall the strike on a local basis.

The strike by junior academic staff at Tel Aviv and Ben Gurion universities was entering its second week. Talks were held last week at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, but the gaps between the sides remained substantial.

Talks at Tel Aviv University were scheduled to begin on Saturday night. During the week there were incidents - called aggressive and illegal by university heads - in which junior staff interfered with the work of teachers who continued teaching. This included breaking into dissection rooms at the medical school, which led to violent clashes with security guards, and between strikers and students who wished to continue with their studies.

Junior academic staff complained that their right to strike had been violated. Junior staff at Technion - Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa will join the dispute next week if a settlement is not reached.

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