Morocco’s Democratic Confederation of Labor (CDT) and the National Federation of Education (FNE) have called on Moroccan teachers to hold a new national strike on Monday, November 16.
The two labor unions also invited teachers to take part in a public demonstration in front of the Ministry of Education’s headquarters in Rabat.
The teachers are demanding the ministry to review the promotion policy for pedagogical and administrative staff in Moroccan schools.
The CDT and FNE especially criticized Decree 02-19-504, adopted on June 26, 2019, which “discriminates against” teachers in the lower salary ranges (scale 7 to 8).
The legal text limits the number of teachers who can earn a promotion from the lower salary ranges to higher ones to 11% of the overall number of teachers in those ranges annually. The restriction prevents many teachers from receiving a promotion, despite having the necessary seniority requirements.
The upcoming protests seek to pressure the education ministry into reviewing the promotion policy and making it “more fair,” especially for senior teachers.
The strike will come less than 10 days after the National Coordination of Contractual Teachers organized a five-day national strike.
From November 3-7, contractual teachers across Morocco took to the streets, boycotting their classes and demanding that the government improve their treatment. While a review of the promotion policy was also among their demands, this category of teachers mainly protests the “illegal deductions” on their salaries.
According to the contractual teachers’ association, the Ministry of Education deducted up to MAD 1,500 ($162) per month from the salaries of contractual teachers who participated in strikes throughout 2019 and 2020.
Legal limits set the maximum deduction at 20% of the total salary. However, the National Coordination of Contractual Teachers claims that it has reached 25% in a large number of cases.
“These deductions are an intense attack on the education sector and teachers’ rights… They aim to destroy civil service jobs and transform public schools into a slave market,” the NGO said in a statement.
The protests and strikes of contractual teachers in Morocco began in 2019. The teachers had several demands, but the most prominent was their integration into the public sector and the abolishment of fixed-term contracts.
The Moroccan government had decided in 2016 to start hiring teachers under annually-renewable contracts. But a large number of contractual teachers considered the new hiring format to be “discriminatory.”
The teachers have also protested the delayed response from the Ministry of Education to some other demands, such as allowances for assignments in remote areas and a more flexible promotion policy.