Egyptian teachers have joined other workers, including doctors and transport workers in strikes and protests to demand better conditions and pay and proper funding for public services.

Striking in Egypt has become a dangerous business, despite the freeing up of unions as a result of the 2011 revolution. First the Morsi administration oppressed strikers, and after that was overthrown by more mass demonstrations, the new army-led administration is equally repressive - jailing and terrorising anyone who campaigns for democratic change, in particular trade unionists. Last week, the doors of an administration building occupied by bus workers were chained up by security forces, cutting off food and medical supplies. 

Hundreds of people, including children were arrested during demonstrations in January to commemorate the third anniversary of the 2011 revolution. Prisoners have reported torture and appalling conditions in the jails. 

The doctors are taking part in the latest of a series of strikes demanding better conditions in the notoriously underfunded hospitals, and improved pay. Teachers similarly are asking for improved pay and conditions and a recognition of their professional status. Thousands of teachers are on temporary contracts and all are on low pay. Some are paid nothing at all on the basis that they will be able to make money through taking pupils for private tuition after school. Class sizes are also unmanageably large. Little has changed despite the fact that teachers, students, doctors and other public service workers were in the forefront of the revolution which overthrew the Mubarak dictatorship.