In a statement to the press union leaders explained that the cuts brought in by central and regional government equate to cuts of between 25 and 30 per cent in the education budget and that these brutal cuts come on top of numerous others made in state education over the past few years and represent the biggest backward step ever in the sector.
They pointed out that with the latest government reforms, classrooms will become overcrowded again with groups of up to 30 students in infant and primary; up to 36 in secondary and up to 42 (or even 46) in sixth form.
Furthermore, substitutes will not be found for teachers during the first two weeks of any sick leave, which the unions say will create huge organisational problems in many centres and will amount to hardship for pupils.
They added that pulling out of certain support programmes in infant education and in new technologies, and changes to vocational training programmes, amount to a step backward in the quality of the education system.
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