Scotland’s largest trade union has warned parents that schools may have to close again unless councils and the Scottish Government find more money for striking workers. 

Primaries and secondaries across the country will shut for most of next week with cleaners and caretakers walking out for three days from Tuesday. 

The industrial action comes after council leaders put forward what they claimed was their “best and final” pay offer. 

Cosla said the deal offered on Thursday would mean workers on the Scottish local government living wage see an in-year uplift of about £2,000, or almost 10%.

That was almost immediately rejected by Unison, one of three unions involved in the negotiations.

However, both the GMB and Unite said the offer represented significant progress. 

Both unions have suspended their industrial action to ballot members, with a recommendation that the deal be accepted. 

READ MORE: Scotland school strikes: Unions to reject 'final offer'

Speaking to the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland programme, Johanna Baxter, Unison’s head of local government, was asked if her members would still go on strike even if the other unions accepted the deal. 

"Yes," she replied, saying the decision had been taken by the union's local government committee made up of representatives from across the entire country.

The Herald:

Ms Baxter said her union remained available for talks over the weekend. 

READ MORE: School strikes Scotland: Full list of schools affected

Asked if she thought there could be more strikes beyond next week's three days, the union official said it would be ”very likely.” 

She added: “I think there is a resolve amongst Unison members about this dispute, because this represents the culmination of a decade of underinvestment in local government, which has not only caused job cuts and decreases to our members’ pay. 

“It has meant that those members who have been left to pick up the pieces of jobs that have been taken away are under far more pressure, far more stress and something has got to give.

“The difficulty that we face at the moment is that we have been having these discussions with Cosla for months now.

"They have had months to come up with a decent pay offer that rewards the workforce and protects jobs and they haven't done it well.”

The trade union boss said the blame for the disruption to pupils, parents and teachers rested with Cosla and the Scottish Government.

“We have every sympathy with parents,” she said. “The uncertainty that has been caused for them by the Scottish Government and Cosla is unacceptable. Many of our members are parents themselves, the last thing they want to be doing is striking.”

Ms Baxter also disputed the figures in Cosla’s claims. She said the £2,000 uplift would only apply to full-time workers, despite many of the jobs involved being part-time.  The other two unions, GMB and Unite have still to say whether or not they have accepted the latest offer.

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Graham McNab, Unite’s lead negotiator for local government, welcomed the new offer. He said: “Unite’s local government committee has agreed to suspend the scheduled strike action next week.

"We will now hold a ballot involving our members on the new pay offer which comes with a recommendation for acceptance.”

“Unite’s primary objective all along has been to negotiate a credible offer that addresses chronic low pay in local government.

"It is an offer that should have been put on the table months ago if it were not for the dithering and blundering by COSLA and Scottish Government ministers.”

“We believe the offer makes sufficient progress on low pay, and it is one that our wider membership should have its say on.”

MB Scotland senior organiser for public services Keir Greenaway said: “It would be wrong to suggest this offer is not a clear improvement on those that came before it, especially for the lowest paid workers.

“GMB is a trade union led by its members and it is absolutely right they are asked to decide on what is a significantly better offer.

“Cosla has itself highlighted how far it has advanced since April, which only begs the question why it took so many months to make an offer worth discussing with our members.

“We remain disappointed it took first the threat and then the looming reality of strike action in Scotland’s schools before we saw any sign of leadership from Cosla.

“Whatever our members decide, lessons should be learned from these needlessly protracted negotiations to ensure workers, parents and pupils do not endure similar uncertainty in future.”