Readers' letters: Time to pay teachers a decent living wage

Education Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville’s stance of “no new offer” to the teachers shows she is out of touch and out of her depth ability wise.

Ministers have their MSP salary and allowance for being a minister, so earning £90,000 plus has no clue regarding the current “cost of living crisis”.

Teachers are using food banks and pantry shops to make ends meet and the profession has been undervalued for more than a decade with small or no salary increases.

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It is time the minister woke upto the fact that education provides the future workforce and the teachers can ensure quality results. The dispute should be settled by awarding the rise this year and an independent pay review commission set up to ensure future rewards are made to the teaching profession.

If Shirley-Anne is not brave enough, then call in FM Nicola Sturgeon who as you will recall settled the bin strike by agreeing to the union request after telling everyone that demand was not sustainable only 48 hours before.

Cosla would agree to this settlement but fear the Scottish Government will, as before, never fully compensate them for increased costs.

Shirley-Anne should make a decision to settle the demand, convince the FM of the need to properly fund the local authorities and get students and teachers back into the classroom to build Scotland’s future.

Michael G Cockburn, Edinburgh

Let’s nationalise the energy companies

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Like many of us, I have just been notified that my future electricity and gas bill for the month is to rise by 230 per cent.

Even as a pensioner, I think I might have just enough money laid by to cover such an amazing increase, but my heart bleeds for all those young couples who are also having to deal with a rising mortgage and having to feed and clothe their families.What really amazes me is how our Scottish and UK governments have been stupid enough to allow us to get into such a ludicrous financial state regarding the production of electricity and gas.

I remember our Scottish Government closing down and demolishing the Longannet power station, which produced electricity for central Scotland because it was using coal.Our atomic power stations are on their last legs and many of our wind turbines are owned, not by Scots, but by foreign investors who will no doubt be passing the profits back to their native countries.While I have never been in favour of nationalisation, I am now forced to consider, that for the good of our nation, all electrical and gas supplies and their distribution should be nationalised and the profits put into the public purse

Archibald A Lawrie, Fife

Sommerville has her knuckles rapped

Yesterday the Education Secretary issued a statement warning the SNP Gender Bill rebel MSPs that because of their actions they should reconsider their position in the party.

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I find it dsgraceful that SNP MSPs should be threatened for voting against the government on an issue which goes against the dictates of their own conscience and against the perceived wishes of their constituents.

However, Ms Somm-erville has probably had her knuckles rapped as Sturgeon has jumped in to tell the rebels that they shouldn't consider leaving the SNP because of this issue.

The thought of losing SNP MSPs and her small majority in Holyrood clearly terrifies her. And the show goes on.

D Mason, Penicuik

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