Parents should not be victims

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ONE of the biggest teaching strikes for years is due to take place tomorrow and widespread chaos is being predicted.

Teachers are taking action over changes to their pension rights and payments as part of a concerted national day of action orchestrated by unions across most of the public sector.

But it is in the classrooms where most disruption to ordinary people’s daily lives is predicted.

The situation is exacerbated by the behaviour of the teaching unions, who want to sow as much disruption as they can by failing to provide schools with the information they need to make an informed decision about whether they are able to remain open or not.

Many schools will not know on Thursday whether enough teachers have turned up for work. That puts an intolerable pressure on parents who won’t know whether to have childcare arrangements and the expense that entails, or not.

Teachers need to tread carefully. As with all industrial action that affects other people, it needs public support.

This behaviour will surely alienate any support they may have, through a desire from the unions to create as much disruption as they can, regardless of who they are affecting.

Time to act for our Women Of Steel

WHEN we asked for a permanent memorial to Sheffield’s Women Of Steel, the politicians responded with fine words and promises.

But 12 months on, there is still no statue. While we understand that money is tight, the women deserve to see the statue in their lifetime. So now is the time for the work to begin.

Remember, most Women Of Steel died before receiving any thanks. The survivors who worked so hard deserve a better fate. This can be done because £28,000 was set aside after the proposal gained cross-party support in April 2010. Now is not the time for bickering about why nothing has happened. Councillors should stop point scoring and erect the statute they promised.

True northern soul

HI-tech design specialist Performance Engineered Solutions’ decision to stay at the Advanced Manufacturing Park, instead of moving south, is a welcome vote of confidence in the region’s capabilities and its future.

PES could have moved closer to the UK’s ‘Motorsport Valley,’ centred on Northamptonshire and Oxfordshire.

But managing director Mike Maddock says the AMP is so strong and the networking opportunities are so good that the company doesn’t need to move.

It has taken 10 years to transform an opencast colliery tip into the most desirable address in advanced manufacturing. Everyone can be proud of that.