Over Half of English Schools Closed or Partially Closed During 'Walkout Wednesday' Teachers' Strike

A large crowd of teachers marched through London’s Oxford Circus on February 1, as thousands of teachers, train and bus drivers, and civil servants carried out strikes on what has been dubbed “Walkout Wednesday."

The National Education Union (NEU) cited “a decade of falling pay” and “a crisis of recruitment and retention within the school system” as reasons for the strike.

Twenty-five percent of teachers leave the profession within two years of qualifying, and a third within five years, the NEU said.

In a video message, UK Education Secretary Gillian Keegan said the government was “working hard to minimize the impact of strike action on children.”

Keegan said she had met the unions many times and was “hugely disappointed” that they had decided to take strike action.

Up to half a million workers were thought to have taken part in the strike on Wednesday, with more than half the UK’s schools closed or partially closed, the Evening Standard reported. Credit: @amoola_83 via Storyful

Video transcript