Music Teacher Says Reykjavík Holds Negotiations Hostage - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Music Teacher Says Reykjavík Holds Negotiations Hostage

Published November 12, 2014

Pianist Hólmfríður Sigurðardóttir writes an article in Morgunblaðið, claiming that negotiations between music teachers and the Association of municipalities have been “taken hostage” by Reykjavík city. Music teachers have been on strike for three weeks, demanding, they say, comparable wages to teachers in other fields of education.

According to Hólmfríður, negotiators on behalf of Reykjavík will only meet the demands given two preconditions in return: that each school district will be free to decide the length of the school year, and that more of the teaching will take place in groups. According to Hólmfríður, the former requirement is intended to facilitate shortening the school year, so that municipalities may pay less for the same amount of teaching, while the latter, also intended to save money, would, according to Hólmfríður, decrease the quality of lessons severely.

Hólmfríður says that the continuous growth of Icelandic music schools through the last decades has been “like a fairytale”, but warns that it could all be permanently dismantled fast.

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