On Tuesday and Thursday – there will also be demos in the city of Vienna – the kindergarten teachers go to the barricades. They want better working conditions. Many parents have a childcare problem on both days.
The unions don’t want to give up until something changes. Corona has exacerbated the problems with the magnifying glass that has been boiling under the covers for a long time: too few staff, too large groups, too little appreciation, a “patchwork carpet” of different rules in the individual federal states. “We need a training offensive, a uniform framework law. And one percent of GDP must flow into the elementary education sector, ”demands Marcus Eibensteiner from Younion. More than 56,000 people work in local kindergartens.
In many facilities only emergency operation
On Thursday, a part of the Ministry of Education will move to Minoritenplatz. It gets loud there. Drummers, trumpeters and a decibel meter come along so that the protest is not overheard. Motto of the demo: “Now there is a stir!” In the morning there is therefore only emergency operation in after-school care centers and kindergartens, including urban ones. “Some parents will have a care problem as a result,” says trade unionist Eibensteiner, himself a father of two children.
Vienna responded by increasing the number of hours
On Tuesday, this only affects private institutions. You have invited company meetings. Some of the children stay at home. Before the protest, the city of Vienna reacted on Monday. The assistance hours in the groups will be doubled from 20 to 40 hours. By 2024 there should be 500 language teachers, 200 more than before. That costs 13 million euros. Vienna spends almost a billion euros on kindergartens every year.
Video: Wiederkehr announces doubling of assistance hours on krone.tv
Is that enough? Expert Judith Hintermeier says no. Vienna is still doing quite well in comparison. But: “We need more educators. This is what we fight for, ”said the women’s chairwoman of the Dasein trade union.