Negotiations between the Finance Ministry and the Teachers' Union aimed at avoiding a teacher strike are still underway, with the main dispute reportedly being around the rescheduling of teachers' vacation days.
The state-owned television channel, Kan 11, reported that progress has been made in the talks, but on the issue of vacations no breakthrough has yet been achieved.
Union leaders are willing to give up three days of vacation a year and Lag Ba'omer in exchange for days off between the Yom Kippur and Sukkot holidays, while the Finance Ministry is demanding a waiver of six days in exchange for a few Fridays.
Yesterday evening (Monday), in an interview with Ran Binyamini and Yigal Guetta on Kan Reshet Bet Education Minister Yifat Shasha Biton said that an agreement can be reached within hours and that it is expected to be valid until 2025, but "it is still under discussion."
The minister also said that in the government "we are used to managing the government ministries through the Finance Ministry. While it is true that they are the gatekeepers, the professional path is determined by the professionals. When that will be clear to everyone,” she said, "many of the difficulties facing the ministries will be resolved."
Negotiations have progressed to the point where they began to go over the teachers' salary tables. There are agreements on the issue of remuneration for school principals, but there are no agreements on the issue of firing teachers.
A large gap between the parties concerns the issue of the budget framework. Shasha Biton noted that the Finance Ministry did not clarify the budgetary framework, and it has not yet been agreed upon.
The minister also said that she is not interested in "a ‘Band-Aid’ solution. It's not just for this coming September 1. We are fighting for a good agreement that will affect our children."