Thousands of parents could be forced to find childcare or stay at home next Wednesday as teachers prepare to take strike action.

Teachers have forced a shutdown of schools across Hertfordshire on March 26, with a one-day walk out over pay, pensions and working conditions.

It is not yet known which schools in Potters Bar will be shut, though parents are urged to speak to their children’s schools directly.

Cllr Chris Hayward, cabinet member for enterprise at Hertfordshire County Council, urged as many schools as possible to stay open for the day.

He added: “We recognise there are strongly-held feelings on both sides of this national dispute, but strike action in a key public service can only be to the detriment of parents and children.

“The decision to stay open or to close is for individual school headteachers and governors to make. We do not have any authority to compel schools to stay open.

“If school leaders decide to close their doors, we have advised them to inform parents and carers as soon as possible in advance, so that they can make alternative arrangements for their children."