Israel’s Education Minister Yifat Shasha-Biton on Monday said that an agreement on teachers salaries could be reached in the coming days to prevent a nationwide strike at the beginning of the new school year.
“If the sides have good will and the intention to reach a deal, we can close this in a few hours,” Shasha-Biton told Channel 12 as Israeli parents are still unsure whether their children will go to schools on Thursday.
“We hope that during the day tomorrow we’ll reach a deal,” the minister added, following weeks of alarming statements from both sides of the conflict with teachers’ union threatening to start an nationwide strike on September 1 if their demands are not met.
Shasha-Biton, who on Sunday called the situation a “national crisis,” noted that she spoke with Israel’s Finance Minister Avigdor Liberman and confirmed that he also expressed optimism about the possible deal.
Earlier on Sunday, Liberman said that he asked the State Prosecutor’s Office for an injunction to force teachers back to work as no breakthrough has been made during the last rounds of talks. The ongoing dispute between the Israeli educators and the government over low salaries led to a series of strikes at the end of the previous school year.