Buenos Aires Province Governor María Eugenia Vidal on Tuesday announced the successful conclusion of a collective bargaining agreement with teacher unions, thus winding up a 14-month saga of tense negotiations interrupted by no less than 27 strikes.
“Teachers will not lose against inflation,” assured the governor.
The agreement pledges to update teacher pay on a quarterly basis to whatever level inflation reaches this year while also awarding a retroactive 15.6 percent increase to cover last year’s loss of purchasing-power.
Starting pay for a teacher now moves up from 16,710 to 18,743 pesos. Agreement on those terms had actually been reached three weeks previously but was stalled by the unions insisting on the return of the pay docked for three strike days in March.
The provincial government finally agreed on condition of recovering the lost classes for the province’s 4.5 million schoolchildren.
Meanwhile, teachers in Santa Fe province agreed to a 15-percent pay increase with the option of a new round of collective bargaining if inflation overtakes that percentage. But deadlock persists with university lecturers, who have called a two-day strike while the national government has postponed collective bargaining in reaction.