Statement by the County Durham Teaching Assistants' Action Committee (CDTAAC), posted on Facebook:
We understand that people are disappointed with the wording of the Council's letter, but those are just words. They are not going to admit, in writing, that they were wrong and we were right however much we know that to be the case. But let's just ignore the words for a moment, and look at the facts.
We are NOT going to be sacked on New Year's Eve. We are NOT going to have a new contract imposed on us on New Year's Day. We are NOT going to have to work 37 hours a week from January. We are NOT going to take a pay cut. We are NOT going to have to accept 'compensation'. We ARE going to have all of our roles and responsibilities reviewed and have new job descriptions drawn up that reflect the realities of our jobs (and TAs will be involved in that process).
Whichever way you look at the facts, that is a HUGE victory for us and a MASSIVE climbdown by Durham County Council. Is it over? Not by a long way. There are a lot of negotiations to come to ensure that there is a positive outcome for all TAs, and there is a lot of fighting still to do. Is our campaign over? Absolutely not. We will continue to keep public and political pressure on the Council through social media, events and PR. We will not be quiet and we will not go away until we have a permanent solution.
But we are now in a position of strength. The Council knows that if we are not happy, or if it is stalling or delaying negotiations, then we will strike. Simple. It knows that that is not an idle threat, and it knows that we can absolutely deliver a rock solid strike with the backing of parents, the public and the Labour Party.
So tonight, please celebrate knowing that it is your strength and solidarity that have achieved this, and we will continue to stand shoulder to shoulder until this is sorted.