Teachers want more talks but strike action still on the table

Primary school teachers believe the government's latest pay offer doesn't come up to standard and they want more talks - but aren't ruling out further strike action.

A mega-strike involving primary and secondary staff is on the cards after primary teachers rejected the Government's latest pay offer.

Parents could face extreme difficulties if the massive strike goes ahead, with the extra pressure and cost of either finding childcare or taking time off work to look after children.

A three percent pay hike for each of the next three years is on the table.

Education Institute president Lynda Stuart says the offer doesn't fix stressful working conditions.

Stuart told The AM Show that teachers just want to find a way forward.

"What they've come back and said resoundingly is that the package actually doesn't meet what it will take to actually attract and retain teachers and principals in the profession."

The offer didn't address the release time and the support the teachers need to do their jobs, Stuart said.

"So it's that time to actually teach, the time for preparation - those are the things that have really been of huge concern to our teachers throughout (this process)."

Pay is still an issue, Stuart says - and maintaining pay parity with their secondary colleagues is key.

"If our teachers and principals had accepted that offer we would have lost pay parity - and that's a real concern."

"We  know that we're not going to see it all in this particular round, we get that. But the loss of pay parity would be huge."

She says primary teachers do want a "significant" pay rise of around 3.9 percent to achieve that pay parity with secondary teachers.

"We want to find a way forward so we're saying that we're really happy to have that conversation, and the conversation really needs to look at what can happen in the short term and what needs to take that little bit longer - and what does the package look like that's actually going to deliver."

Stuart says she doesn't know what will happen with any proposed strike and she can't rule one out.

But they're looking at paid union meetings in the week of 6-10 May to look at any new offer - or to discuss what industrial action needs to be taken.

Newshub.