Teachers are being balloted in all areas of Scotland for strike action in a dispute over pay.
The Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) is balloting members after they rejected a “wholly inadequate” 5% pay offer.
Postal ballot papers are being issued to EIS members across Scotland who will have until November 8 to submit their vote.
The ballot follows a recent consultative ballot, where 94% of EIS members voted to reject a 5% pay offer and 91% said they would be willing to move to strike action.
The union is now urging members to vote yes to strike action in the postal ballot, which opened on Wednesday October 12.
EIS General Secretary Andrea Bradley said: “In opening this statutory ballot for strike action today, the EIS is acting in the best interests of Scotland’s teaching professionals.
“We had hoped not to get to this point, but a series of much delayed and sub-inflation level pay offers from the employers have angered our members and forced this move towards strike action.
“Our members responded magnificently to our recent consultative ballot, turning out in huge numbers to reject the wholly inadequate 5% pay offer and to indicate a strong willingness to take strike action in pursuit of a fair settlement.
“The statutory ballot that we are opening today will provide us with a clear mandate to commence a programme of strike action later this autumn, should no satisfactory offer have been received by the time the ballot closes next month.”
She added: “The EIS is urging its members to vote Yes for strike action, so that we can secure another overwhelming result that will make COSLA and Scottish Government think hard about the kind of improved offer that they need to bring to the negotiating table if strike action by teachers is to be averted.
“The growing cost of living crisis is impacting on people across the country, and our members are not prepared to accept a sub-inflation level pay award that represents a deep real-terms cut to their pay.
“With inflation already at more than 12%, a pay offer at less than half that level is simply not going to cut it with Scotland’s teachers.
“COSLA and the Scottish Government must act now to deliver a fair pay deal for teachers, or face the reality of widespread strike action across Scotland’s schools this autumn.”