Polish govt has no money to meet striking teachers’ demands

Warsaw residents gathered in the city's Old Town to show support for the striking teachers' whose nationwide pay protest has been going for five days without any signs the government could grant their demands, in Warsaw, Poland, Friday, April 12, 2019. Similar rallies were held in some other cities.(AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

camera(The Associated Press) Warsaw residents gathered in the city’s Old Town to show support for the striking teachers’ whose nationwide pay protest has been going for five days without any signs the government could grant their demands, in Warsaw, Poland, Friday, April 12, 2019. Similar rallies were held in some other cities.(AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

A nationwide strike of Poland’s teachers has entered its second week with the government saying it has no more funds to meet their pay demands after offering generous bonuses to various other groups.

The majority among Poland’s hundreds of thousands of teachers continued their strike Monday, idling schools and kindergartens. They are demanding a 30% raise to their monthly earnings that are mostly below what a supermarket cashier makes.

No talks were scheduled with the government, which insists it can offer no more than a 15% increase and says that anything more would bust the state budget, a clear sign that its policy of generous spending to secure backing in this year’s elections has reached its limit.

The strike, however, did not prevent primary school graduation exams from being held Monday.