The start of end-of-year exams in Portugal was disrupted on Monday as teachers went on strike
The education ministry says around a third of students sitting exams were affected, while teachers’ unions claimed 90% of their members had stopped work to protest at austerity measures slashing jobs and lengthening the working week.
“We’re very anxious. We don’t know when we can come back to sit our exams. The country wants to go forward, but a strike is being held on the day of a national exam,” said one student.
The education ministry says any student who was unable to sit the exam will be able to on July 2.
“I agree with the teachers’ strike. Although the Ministry says that the strike affects students, I think that the rules that are imposed on teachers have also been undermining the students throughout the year,” said another student in Lisbon.
The strike followed demonstrations at the weekend. Portugal’s two union federations have called for a general strike on June 27 in an atmosphere of hardening resistance to the cuts.