Motions passed at General Meetings and AGM - NEU


Deputy General Secretary Hustings 9th September 2021

posted 10 Sept 2021, 03:59 by NEU Secretary   [ updated 10 Sept 2021, 04:00 ]


Islington NEU agreed to nominate Gawain Little in the election for Deputy General Secretary

General Meeting 30th June 2021

posted 1 Jul 2021, 23:50 by NEU Secretary

A) Museum of the Home (Geffrye Must Fall)

 

Islington NEU reiterates its  support for the ‘Geffrye Must Fall’ Campaign and notes:


1.      The Museum of the Home (formerly the Geffrye Museum), under pressure from the government, has ignored the public consultation which voted by over 70% for the statue of slave trader Robert Geffrye to be removed from the front of the building.

2.      The removal of the statue from the front is not an attempt to wipe out our history, but to place it in the context of racism and slavery

3.      The continuing need for decolonising the curriculum

4.      The campaign for its removal has widespread backing from different organisations and individuals including local Hackney MP Diane Abbott, Hackney LP, many Hackney councillors, Hackney SUTR and others

5.      Many black parents and campaigners have stated they do not want their children to visit the museum while they have to pass under the statue  

6.      That the museum is not far from Hackney’s border with Islington and for many years has been visited by Islington school groups usually without being aware of the murderous record of the racist man who’s statue they have to pass beneath to enter the building.

 

Islington NEU notes the protests that took place on 12th June, the day of the museum’s re-opening, and agrees:

a.       To continue to support protests organised by Geffrye Must Fall

b.      To continue to call upon the museum to remove the statue to a more appropriate place, where it can be used for genuine educational purposes

c.       To urge schools, children’s and young people’s groups to boycott the museum and organise no trips there until the statue is removed from the front.

d.      To call on Islington Council to support the campaign to take  down the statue and to discourage schools from taking children to the museum until this has happened.

 

B) Special Leave Policy – Making Eid a paid authorised absence for teachers in Islington schools.

Islington NEU notes: 

  • The Special Leave model policy circulated and recommended by Islington Local Authority to schools includes 1 day unpaid leave for Religious Observance. 
  • That this is significantly different to the policies of many of our surrounding boroughs which recommend that such leave is paid  
  • That in many Islington schools Headteachers have traditionally used their right of discretion to allow the leave to be taken as authorised paid leave but in an increasing number this is no longer the case. 
  • That in many Islington schools the significant number of pupils given authorised absence for Eid means that there are no ‘cover’ costs for schools when teachers take leave on these days.

 

 Islington NEU believes that: 

  • As a matter of religious equality the Muslim holidays of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al- Adha should be paid authorised absences in line with the ample holiday given around the Christian festivals. 
  • That consideration should also be given to significant holidays in other faiths that fall within term time. 
  • Members should not be made to feel that religious observation is now viewed in the same way as moving houses or attending weddings. 
  •  

 We resolve to: 

  • Seek Regional Office support in obtaining comparative data for how leave for religious observance is treated in other local authorities 
  •  Seek to change the Islington model policy so that it reflects the views expressed above.
  •  To survey members on this issue with a view to seeking support from the National Action committee if members wish. 

 


General Meeting 19th May 2021

posted 20 May 2021, 06:30 by NEU Secretary   [ updated 20 May 2021, 06:33 ]


1.         Islington Officer and Committee Vacancies

 It was agreed that Paddy de Clair and Michael Delaney would join the Committee

 

2.         Motions submitted by Members

 

A) Solidarity with Leaways NEU - Stop union busting in Kedleston Group

 

This branch notes:

1. Leaways is a privately-run specialist secondary education provision in Hackney for young people with Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) needs.

2. Nearly 90 pupils attend Leaways and local authorities pay the company, Kedleston, over £53,000 per pupil.

3. The NEU group at Leaways is currently in dispute with their employer and have taken over 20 days of strike action, with future dates planned.

4. In late 2020, NEU members walked out for the first time over increased class sizes and management’s refusal to implement the full 2.75 per cent national pay award. The NEU also pointed to the absence of a pay progression structure and a cap of just seven days for occupational sick pay even midst the pandemic.

5. The NEU group also has serious concerns about the treatment of students, including poor heating and ventilation of the school building, the absence of outdoor play space, and the management’s failure to provide relevant therapies for students, and so meet statutory requirements.

6. In response, Kedleston has sacked the school’s NEU rep and disciplined other members of staff.

7. Ultimate ownership of the school is with an offshore fund based in a tax haven in Jersey, presumably to avoid tax on profits.

8. The owners of the Kedleston Group, the Brosnan family of financiers, have also been involved in other scandals. They featured in a BBC Panorama documentary showing patients being slapped and restrained under chairs at Winterbourne View, a Bristol care home. Another family-owned firm was involved in the death of a 2-year old at one of its nurseries.

9. Islington Council sends pupils to Leaways School.

This branch believes that:

1. The Leaways dispute highlights the concerning emergence of the for-profit sector as central to the education and care of children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and/or who have been excluded from school. The pattern mirrors developments in residential care with offshore private equity profits subsidised by the public funding.

2. The services provided by outfits like Kedleston can and should be provided better and cheaper in the public sector.

3. The case of Leaways also underscores the need for a national campaign opposing central government’s chronic underfunding of SEND/SEMH provision.

4. It is a basic right to join or organise a union, and it isinappropriate that any public money is provided to an employer that tries to ban or bust unions. Islington Council should examine its relationship with Leaways as a matter of urgency.

5. Local councils should ensure that the needs of young people with SEND can be met within the public sector local family of schools. There is no place for profit-making in education, and we support the demand for a ‘good local school for EVERY child’.

6. Islington Council needs to hold Kedleston to account for how it is using public money, making sure its listens to staff and put pupils first.

Therefore, this branch resolves to:

1. Send a message of congratulations from our branch to the NEU group at Leaways following their successful struggle.

2. Write to Islington councillors and council officers and demand an increase publicly provided school places for young people with SEND in Islington schools.

References https://www.hackneygazette.co.uk/news/george-binette-explains-the-leaways-school-dispute-7890836 https://www.dianeabbott.org.uk/news/articles/item1708 https://actionnetwork.org/letters/stop-union-busting-in-kedleston-group

 

B) Solidarity with workers at SAGE Nursing Home

 

As discussed in our last branch meeting, this branch resolves to donate £300 to the United Voices of the World union strike fund.

https://www.uvwunion.org.uk/en/news/2021/04/sage-nursing-home-workers-vote-for-a-voice-at-work-and-strike-action/

 

B2) Emergency Motion on Palestine

 

 

Islington NEU notes:

The 73rd anniversary of the Nakba - or catastrophe in 1948, where many Palestinians living in the territory that became Israel were evicted from their homes and lands

The continuing 54 year repressive Israeli occupation of the West Bank (and de facto of the Gaza strip) and the continued extension of illegal settlements on this land.

Over the past week Israeli forces and armed settlers have attacked Palestinians who are refusing to be forcibly uprooted from their homes, stormed the Al-Aqsa mosque during Ramadan prayers, and beaten and arrested people indiscriminately.

In response to crude rocket fire from the Gaza strip protesting the treatment of their fellow Palestinian, Israel has launched bombs into Gaza killing a large number of people, including many children.

Israel's failure to meet its obligation to provide vaccinations against Covid to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza

The mass demonstrations in London (and other areas) against Israeli oppression of the Palestinians

Islington NEU believes:

That Israeli government policy towards the Palestinian people reflects a discriminatory racist and colonialist mentality, and it amounts to ethnic cleansing.

We resolve to:

Support and publicise events organised by the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign and Stop the War against the bombings

To ask local MP's to raise the current Israeli evictions, bombings and treatment of Palestinians in relation to the diplomatic, military and economic support of the UK government

To write to the Foreign Secretary demanding that the UK government end all arms sales to Israel and bans the importation of goods produced in the occupied West Bank.

 

C) Medical Aid for Palestine

Islington NEU agrees to affiliate to MAP’s campaigns in support of Palestinian health workers and for the removal of barriers to health faced by Palestinians living under occupation and as refugees. (£50). We also agree to donate a further £250

We note that MAP supports Palestinians affected by occupation, conflict and displacement by working with local partners on the ground to provide essential healthcare services and supplies. It also campaigns in the UK and internationally for meaningful action to address the political barriers to Palestinians’ rights to health and dignity.

We recognise that MAP opposes racism in all its forms, including anti – Muslim hatred, antisemitism and xenophobia, and any form of discrimination whether based on race, religion, nationality, race, gender, sex, colour, sexual orientation, age, disability, conscience, belief, culture, language and birth.


D) Justice for Colombia

Islington NEU notes that:

Colombia is the most dangerous place in the world to be a trade unionist. Every year numerous union leaders, union activists and union members are assassinated – simply because of their trade union activities. Over 3,000 trade unionists have been murdered since the mid-1980s, and nobody has been brought to justice in almost 90% of the cases.

Most of the killings are carried out by right wing paramilitaries with historic links to the Colombian state. The Colombian security forces have also been directly responsible for many of the killings.

Colombia also has some of the worst workers’ rights in the world. A 2017 report by the ITUC gave Colombia the second worst possible ranking and placed it amongst the 10 worst countries in the world to be a worker.

We agree to affiliate to the Justice for Colombia campaign (£90) and agree to donate a further a £150.

Justice for Colombia was set up in 2002 by the British trade union movement to support Colombian civil society in its struggle for human rights, labour rights, peace and social justice.

All JFC work is carried out in response to the demands of partners in Colombia: the political activists, trade unionists, peasant organisations, human rights defenders, and other civil society groups who are on the front line in demanding peace and social justice.

JFC promotes links of solidarity between British and Irish trade unions and organisations in Colombia and gives a political voice internationally to Colombian civil society through our work in the British, Irish and EU Parliaments.

Its objectives are to

·         Raise awareness of the situation for Colombian trade unionists in both Britain and Ireland.

·         Build links between Colombian trade unionists and trade unionists in Britain and Ireland.

·         Denounce trade union abuses in the British Parliament.


E) For a mass campaign to resist the police crackdown bill (the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill)

This branch notes:

- That the Tory government is currently attempting to pass legislation - the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill - that hugely increases police powers and severely curtails the right to protest and picket in this country.

- That this bill allows police forces to criminalise any protest, picket or gathering they deem a “public nuisance” - a deliberately broad definition that gives the police discretion to break up events and arrest people at protests as they see fit.

- That this bill will also lead to further criminalisation of GRT (Gypsy, Roma, Traveller) communities through the updating of trespass from civil to criminal breach of law, leading to increased evictions, property seizure, family separations and incarceration of GRT people.

- That this bill will increase forms of police harassment and abuse, such as the justifications and scope of stop and search powers that are disproportionately wielded against Black people.

- That this bill will provide the legal mechanism for the rebranding of Youth Offending Institutions as “Secure Schools,” under the MoJ not the DoE, and incentivise charities to run these.

- That this bill ensures that actions of police officers are above the law during police car pursuit chases due to its amending of the 1998 Road Traffic Act.

- That this bill will needlessly increase surveillance powers, such as gaining access to electronic devices and holding people to obtain DNA or fingerprints.

- That this bill will extend the PREVENT duty, which already disproportionately targets those racialised as Muslim thus making educational institutions domains of surveillance, stress and threat for them, so as to increasingly also target Black young people.

- That this bill will increase the length and reach of criminal sentences, with longer sentences, minimum sentencing increased and mandatory, younger people eligible for whole life sentences, parole boards empowered to deny parole, and more; all of which will likely be used as ways of filling the 10,000 new prison places to emerge from the currently under-construction mega prisons.

- That an amendment put forward by a Labour Party MP seeks to introduce the Nordic Model of sex work and criminalise certain online platforms used by sex workers, which would lead to the backdoor criminalisation of sex work and would deeply exacerbate the dangers of sex work without offering any meaningful support to survive or exit the industry if needed.

- That there are both historic and contemporary examples of employers using police against legitimate pickets, undercover police within the trade union movement, and retrospective arrest and incarceration of trade union organisers to intimidate, undermine and quash trade union activities.

- That, given this, extending police powers will almost certainly lead to such tactics becoming widespread amongst employers who want to subdue union organisation and industrial action, alongside causing increased jeopardy to our Black, GRT and sex working comrades.

- That the government is likely to make concessions with this bill in an attempt to demobilise the movement.

- That to allow any form of this bill to pass and be enforced would be to abdicate responsibility towards and solidarity with Black, GRT and sex industry workers and non-workers.

This branch also notes:

- That protests against this bill have been met with severe police repression and widespread media coverage of police propaganda.

- That many attendees, legal observers, medics, and even representatives of the press have been attacked and injured at these protests, often without any provocation whatsoever, by police officers.

- That this violence from the police is in no way comparable to the supposed disorder that they were allegedly responding to.

- That the police have historically acted to break-up trade union activities with similar displays of force, such as at Orgreave and Wapping.

- That such displays of force are a regular occurrence against Black communities, GRT communities and sex workers and, as such, these parallels serve as reminders of what we have in common across movements, communities and industries.

This branch resolves:

- To publicly support the national Kill the Bill coalition by signing this statement: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdxxoAcut2Z3BXU1qeiE824MCXHk7TKlFCDSfgbBoV1AuQ18Q/viewform and contributing to national meetings, strategy and actions.

- To donate £100 to the national Kill the Bill coalition or founding groups.

- To commit to resisting this bill in its entirety in solidarity with the wider trade union movement, GRT communities, racialised people, and sex workers, who are all

disproportionately targeted by police powers already and face an intensification of such with this bill.

- To contribute to local organising efforts for the national Kill the Bill coalition via branch representatives, funds, information, networks, signposting, and more.

- To mobilise for any “Kill the Bill” actions organised by the local branch of the national coalition or by other local activists, including organising a delegation to attend these demonstrations.

- To stand in solidarity with other Kill the Bill actions and activists, regardless of whether the tactics they employ are commensurate with traditional trade union actions or tactics.

- To develop political education around policing, prisons, anti-racism, GRT lives, and sex worker politics in our branch and across our union in service of building solidarity across communities and a mass movement against this bill.

- To develop political understanding of trade unions, their history, and the purpose of industrial action in the wider non-trade union elements of the Kill the Bill movement, thus building and diversifying the trade union movement’s membership, politics, strategies, solidarities and strengths.

- To take our branch banner on any and all demonstrations we decide to attend.

- To instruct our union to take up such organisation nationally in order to render this bill unenforceable and defeat it before it passes, or make it ungovernable through direct action.

- To call upon our union to go to the TUC with a demand for a national mass campaign across all affiliated unions to oppose and defeat this bill in its entirety, regardless of any concessions the government might make.

- To call upon our union to put pressure on the Labour Party to come out strongly against this bill and its amendments, and to resist any increase of police powers or restriction on the right to protest or picket.

- To link this struggle with that of other workers, unions and community groups, by calling for a mass campaign across the labour movement and beyond - including building towards coordinated strike action - to bring down this Tory government.


 

 

Annual General Meeting 24th March 2021

posted 25 Mar 2021, 03:01 by NEU Secretary   [ updated 25 Mar 2021, 03:01 ]


1.     Installation of New President -Krystell Lopez 

2.    Islington Officer Elections

The following nominations have been received and these were agreed by the meeting  

·         Secretary (District and State Branch) – Tony Buttifint

·         Vice President (District and State Branch) – Terry Sullivan

·         Equalities – Krystell Lopez

·         Young Teacher – Sarah Asamoah

·         International Solidarity – Dave Rosenberg

·         Post 16 Section – Pippa Dowswell

·         Press and Publicity – Ken Muller

·         Committee Member – Sean Doherty

3.     2021/22 Local Subscription Fee

    Due to savings made during the pandemic it is proposed that this is reduced from 11% to 5% of the National Fee

4.     Motions submitted by Members

A)   Golders Green Sage Care Home Workers

Islington NEU congratulates the Golders Green Sage care home workers on their campaign of strike action to win recognition for their union, UVW, and an increase in their current hourly rate of pay of just over £8 to £12.

Their courage and determination to win respect from their bosses and a real living wage is an inspiration to all of us fighting to put people before profits.

We agree to donate £100 to the Sage care home workers strike hardship fund.

B)   National Education Museum

Islington District agrees to become a Founder Patron of the National Education Museum with a donation of £2500.

Details of the proposed Museum can be found at nationaleducationmuseum.uk

C) Police and Crimes Bill 

Islington NEU notes the attack by the Metropolitan police on March13th on the vigil mourning the murder of Sarah Everard at Clapham Common. We further note that the man charged with Sarah’s murder is a serving member of the Metropolitan Police.

We welcome both the statements from our joint General Secretaries and members of the NEU executive condemning the attack and re-affirming the rights of women to be able to live their lives safely and free from any form of abuse and attack.

We further note the draconian provisions in the Police and Crimes Bill and its blatant attempt to curtail the right to protest.

We agree to work with other local organisations including the Trades Council, Islington Stand Up To Racism, CLPs and local community and environmental organisations to build maximum opposition to this dangerous piece of legislation. To this end we support the calling of the broadest-based representative meeting to galvanise local support and engage with national campaigns pursuing the same objectives.


General Meeting - 4th February 2021

posted 5 Feb 2021, 07:06 by NEU Secretary   [ updated 5 Feb 2021, 07:06 ]


Local Officer Elections

Terry Sullivan was elected as a member of the Islington committee

Nominations for National Executive 2021-2023

The following candidates were nominated

Inner London Executive Seat

·         Jess Edwards  

·         Abdul Choudhury 

·         Alex Kenny 

·         Ruth Gibson

    Equality and Sector Seats  

·         Black Members - Vic Chechi Ribeiro

·         LGBT+ - Kacey de Groot

·         Disabled - Colleen Johnson

·         Post 16 - Duncan Blackie

·         Support Staff - Trish Fay

4.    Prioritisation of Motions for National Conference 2021

the following motions were prioritised

  • 31 - Black Lives Matter  
  • 16- Covid- 19 and Workload 
  • 39 - Combating Climate Breakdown 
  • 9 - Pay Freeze  
  • 3 - GCSE and A levels  
  • 40 – Exclusions 

Motions submitted by Members

A)     United Nations – Anti-Racism Day (March 20th) and Stand Up to Racism – Trade Union Conference (February 27th)

NEU Islington notes:

(1) The Covid-19 pandemic has led to starkly disproportionate BAME deaths.

(2) This, and the inspiring #BlacklivesMatter movement in the wake of the racist murder of George Floyd by police, has exposed on a mass scale the deeply institutionalised racism in society.

(3) Meanwhile, Boris Johnson’s government have turned in moments of crisis to an intensification of the racist scapegoating of refugees and migrants

NEU Islington believes:

(1) Our trade unions are critical in organising the mass anti-racist movement we need to challenge every instance of racism, Islamophobia and antisemitism, and opposing the threat posed by divisive racist in our communities and workplaces, the far right, and fascism.

NEU Islington resolves:

(1) To support the Stand Up To Racism–TUC backed national day of action for United Nations Anti-Racism Day on Saturday 20th March.

(2) To co-host our local events with SUTR, add our logo to promotional materials and make a donation of £200 to help fund the day.

(3) To support the Stand Up To Racism TUC backed Trade Union Conference (on-line) ‘Fighting for antiracists workplaces’ – on Saturday 27th February and to send at least 2 delegates


 

Delayed AGM - 1st December 2020

posted 8 Dec 2020, 04:32 by NEU Secretary   [ updated 8 Dec 2020, 06:25 ]

AGM Minutes

01/12/20


 1) Local Organisation;

(a     (a) 2020/21 Subscription Fee  - Agreed

  (b)  Islington Officer Elections  

·         Secretary (District and State Branch) – Tony Buttifint

·         Vice President (District and State Branch) – Krystell Lopez

·         International Solidarity – Dave Rosenberg

·         Press and Publicity – Ken Muller

·         Equalities – Krystell Lopez

·         Young Teacher – Sarah Amissah

·         Post 16 – Pippa Dowswell

  (c ) Election of Annual Conference Delegates 

Paul Atkin, Sarah Amissah, Tony Buttifint, Pippa Dowswell, Krystall Lopez, Anna Wolmoth

   (d)  Accounts - Agreed


2.  Rule Changes

 6.8 Change quorum of General Meetings from 15 to 12


3.      Motions for Annual Conference

1)      Exclusions

Conference notes that the Covid-19 pandemic has underlined existing inequalities in our fragmented educational system and wider society, particularly in working class and black communities, thus placing those at greater risk of exclusion in greater jeopardy.

Conference further notes that the Timpson Review of school exclusions highlighted that:

1. Students with Educational Special Needs, Black and Gypsy/Roma and Traveller children and those eligible for free school meals are disproportionally excluded from school and from education, whether through short term or long term formal exclusion or the illegal off-rolling of students

2. There are huge discrepancies between schools that seek to include and those where there is a high rate of exclusion

3. Exclusion can leave children socially isolated and educationally disadvantaged, and puts them at risk of becoming involved in the criminal justice system

4. Parents of children excluded feel unsupported by the education system and the Independent Review System.

Conference further notes the Review failed to address:

(a) how the stereotyping of black children and institutional racism underlies racial disparities in rates of exclusion

(b) the impact of so called ‘zero tolerance’ approaches to behaviour which do not support the needs underlying challenging behaviour, and which often impose rigid and discriminatory expectations on students.

Conference instructs the NEU Executive to campaign for:

1. A fully inclusive, properly funded education service where exclusion is reduced and ultimately ended, and to call for a moratorium on exclusions in the wake of the pandemic

2. All schools to publish data on exclusions and the destinations of students no longer attending, and to be accountable for these students and the funding of their education

3. Behaviour systems which support rather than penalise students, whatever their culture or background

4. Managed moves only take place when properly resourced alternative provision is in place, and members in AP are properly valued and renumerated.

5. The reform of Independent Review Panels, including returning their power to compel schools to accept back a student

Further, Conference instructs the NEU Executive to affiliate to No More Exclusions.


2)      COVID-19 AND WORKLOAD

Conference notes that:

  1.  returning to schools in September 2020 created far more stress than normal for all Education workers
  2. the government’s funding of the unusual situation most schools found themselves in was vastly deficient
  3. that while some schools have made very sensible decisions on assessment and accountability to reduce staff workload, others have been less responsive 

 Conference believes that the severe real terms cuts to school budgets since 2010 have already created a crisis in our schools that has resulted in an increased workload and stress levels for all, with higher class sizes and fewer staff and that this has been hugely exacerbated by the effects of the Covid crisis.  For example, but not exclusively:

i.          Covering for absent self-isolating colleagues

ii.         Having an increase in split lunches/breaks/start end times

iii.        Increased testing and assessment in order to ascertain pupils’ levels

iv.        Demands on education workers to learn new methods of delivery

v.         Continuing to carry out observations, learning walks, book checks and other forms of monitoring

vi.        Demanding teachers set and assess and, in some cases,  deliver home learning, as well as continuing with their duties at school

 In many cases these have been expected without extra funding, time or professional development, alongside teachers regular duties.

Conference believes:

a. the government needs to intervene to direct schools more specifically in how to reduce teacher workload.

b. that the Union’s campaign for school funding has been very strong, but that still too few members of the public understand the direct consequences of the lack of funding in schools.

Conference instructs the Executive to:

A.         Lobby the government to direct its own workload charter for schools in consultation with education trade unions.  

B.         Lobby the government to set an absolute legal limit on class sizes.

C.         Re-launch the union’s campaign for proper funding

D.         Promote heavily those schools that have abandoned workload-heavy tasks (notably those linked to accountability) since September 2020

E.         Re-launch workload as a priority campaign for the Union.

F. Actively support schools and Districts taking action up to and including strike action over workload

 

3)    COMBAT CLIMATE BREAKDOWN IN SCHOOL AND BEYOND

 

Conference recognises 

1. The COVID crisis has been one manifestation of environmental blowback.

2. Climate breakdown and mass extinction is accelerating.

3. The world needs a global green new deal with all countries co-operating to salvage human civilisation.

4. The COP in November 2021 will be a pivotal point.

5. The measures taken by the UK government are not adequate even to meet its existing targets but many local authorities have declared a climate emergency.

6. The refusal of the DFE to consider a curriculum review to make our education system adequate for the society we need and implement their legal obligation under Article 12 of the Paris Agreement is a betrayal of the children in our schools.

 Conference instructs the Executive to:

 1. Review all national union activity and infrastructure to draw up a plan for complete eradication of greenhouse gas emissions and begin implementing it as rapidly as possible - with a report on progress at the 2022 conference.

2. Ensure that education in Just Transition is built into our reps training and call on Districts to incorporate it into local training.

3. Incorporate the huge range of creative work in developing climate themed education done by teachers and environmental campaigns into the Union’s CPD programme.

4. Take these points to the TUC to propose the rest of the trade union movement does the same.

5 Call for all schools, LAs and MATs to declare a climate emergency and to plan a path to zero greenhouse gas emissions by supporting the Let’s Go Zero 2030 campaign and for LAs to establish local Task Forces, comprising representatives of all relevant parties including school staff and students, parents, FE colleges, universities, employers and trade unions; to coordinate provision and support for Just Transition in local economies and  transition from school to training and work, with teacher unions represented in the local authority’s climate emergency policy process.

6. Work with the school students movement, other unions and campaigns in informing and mobilising our members in support of actions up to and beyond the November COP in Glasgow.

 

4.      Emergency Motions

Pay freeze

Islington NEU believes that the government’s announcement of a public sector pay freeze is an insult to key workers who kept the country going through one of the worst crises in generations.

We note that:

i) school staff have been hailed as key workers during the pandemic;

ii) despite the 2019 pay award being broadly in line with inflation, this follows a decade of   pay restraint leaving teacher and support staff take home pay nearly 20% lower than 2010;

iii) a government who have totally failed in their public health and economic response to  Covid-19 clearly intends the cost of the crisis to land on the shoulders of working people.

 We therefore call on the Executive, as a matter of urgency to:

1) Build a public campaign to press the educational benefits of ‘fair pay for all school workers’ and fully funded pay awards – seeking the support of political parties for this;

 2) Build a major campaign with our members, with national, regional and local briefings, events, rallies and activities, seeking to engage as many members as possible. This campaign should lead to a ballot for national strike action should the government not meet our demands.

 3) Work with other unions, to develop a coordinated campaign to challenge the pay freeze and coordinate action where at all possible.

We agree to support a local joint unions protest against the public sector pay freeze outside or close to Islington town hall, provisionally from 5 pm on Thursday 10 December.


Emergency Motion on Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party

Islington NEU notes that Jeremy Corbyn

1.      has supported our union locally and nationally in many disputes and on many issues since first elected MP for Islington North in 1983, and this is the case for many unions, movements and campaigns; so, the current action being taken against him by the "new leadership" is a concern for the whole movement, not just the Labour Party,

2.      is the most active and committed anti-racist and internationalist ever to lead a major political Party in the UK,

3.      made two statements in response to the EHRC Report, both of which said the same thing and both of which are true a) that antisemitism, as any racism, is completely unacceptable b) that the scale of it in the Party is tiny

 

Further notes that

1.      demands for him to "get real" and apologise for the second part of this statement would require him to become complicit in a factionally convenient lie,

2.      the gagging orders sent out to prevent Party organisations discussing this issue are couched in implicitly racist terms - in presuming that all members of "communities" think the same way and will be made to feel "unwelcome" by the same things.

3.      and are being used to suspend officers of local branches were a discussion has been allowed, including former NEU President Louise Regan,

Condemns these moves and calls for Jeremy Corbyn to have the whip restored and all members suspended for calling for his reinstatement should be reinstated.

 

Resolves to 

1.      send this motion as part of a solidarity letter to Jeremy Corbyn, Louise Regan, both Islington CLP Secretaries and Richard Watts; with Inner London NEU Exec members cc'd in.

2.      invite Jeremy Corbyn to a forthcoming Islington NEU meeting to discuss the whole range of the current political crisis and to discuss his ideas of radical education.

 

5.      Motions submitted by Members

A)     Motion on the Holloway Prison site

Islington NEU notes:

  1. That In March 2019 the Peabody Housing Association “bought” the empty Holloway Prison site for £82 million.
  2. That as well as receiving a  loan of £42 million from the Mayor of London they also got a grant of £40 million.
  3. That when they got the site they pledged 42% of the 1,000 new homes would be for social rent and to build a Women’s Building for the support of vulnerable women.
  4. That the Peabody Trust is now back-tracking on their commitments.

 We believe that this unacceptable and that the Mayor and Islington Council should not allow Peabody to renege on its promises.. At a time when many of us are worrying about our health, our jobs and the future of our families, a good quality, energy-efficient, truly affordable home has never been more important. At a time when we’re worrying about our health, our jobs and the future of our families, a good quality, energy-efficient, truly affordable home has never been more important.

 We demand that:

  • 60% of the new homes at the Holloway Prison site are at council equivalent rents
  • That a dedicated, visionary and transformative Women's Building is put in place there that will help women in all areas of society

 We agree to donate £250 to the Islington Homes For All campaigning group.

 

B)     Coats4Calais Appeal

 Islington NEU notes that:

 

  1. in Northern France more than 3,000 refugees are currently sleeping rough. Temperatures are rapidly dropping and police raids and evictions are worse than ever. 
  2. in the UK there are over 3,500 people stuck in limbo at hotels, hostels and military barracks. They arrive in just the clothes they are wearing, so they can’t take these off to wash them. They are poorly equipped for a British winter and many have no coat at all.

 We recognise:

1.     that these appalling conditions are driving refuges to risk their lives by desperately trying to reach the UK in small boats, sometimes with tragic consequences.

2.     that the UK government is directly responsible for the deaths by drowning which occur by failing to provide refugees with safe passage to the UK so that they can claim refugee status without putting seriously endangering their lives.

 We congratulate Stand Up to Racism and Care for Calais for launching a Winter Appeal whose goal is to provide each and every one of these refugees with a warm winter coat and agree to donate £250.

 

 

General Meeting 14th October 2020

posted 15 Oct 2020, 06:19 by NEU Secretary   [ updated 15 Oct 2020, 06:19 ]


Vacant Executive Seats:

i) Black Members 

Meeting agreed to make a nomination and then voted to nominate Vik Chechi – Ribeiro

i) ATL Legacy 

Meeting agreed to make a nomination and then voted to nominate Abdul Choudury


Motions submitted by members

A)     DfE guidance on permissible themes and resources for Relationships, Sex and Health education

Islington district notes that:

• The Department for Education’s recent guidance for schools on planning their relationships, sex and health curriculum states that schools “should not under any circumstances use resources produced by organisations that take extreme political stances on matters.”

• The guidance lists as examples of extreme political stances “a publicly stated desire to abolish or overthrow democracy, capitalism, or to end free and fair elections.”

This branch believes that:

• Children should be encouraged by their teachers to think for themselves about important and complex issues such as homelessness, poverty, fair trade, racism, the climate crisis etc and should learn about the presence of activism rooted in a desire for social, economic and environmental justice

• Children should be encouraged through the curriculum to find about the lives of figures who have fought for equal rights and freedom from oppression here and in other countries, noting that figures such as Nelson Mandela were condemned by opponents as “extremists”.

• Teachers should give children the tools and information for informed discussions by exposing them to materials from a wide range of sources.

• Teachers should encourage children to be inquisitive, to think, read, and listen critically and analytically and not arbitrarily place subjects off-limits

• In upholding democracy and free speech as important values, – teachers should be encouraging children to look at current institutions and arrangements in society and become confident in developing their own views about what should be supported, reformed, or replaced with alternatives.

• Schools should practise as well as learn about justice, equality and human rights: that means allowing children to see themselves as having a legitimate say on such matters.

This branch further notes the significance of the Black Lives Matter movement globally and its demand that children learn about slavery, colonialism and empire. This cannot be taught in a holistic way without teaching and thinking critically about the economic arrangements in which these occurred.

This branch expresses its concern about the drift towards authoritarianism expressed in these guidelines and the chilling effect they are likely to have on children’s access to information on important and pressing issues in our society.

This branch resolves to

• encourage teachers to continue to put equality and social justice at the heart of their teaching.

• call on Islington Council to oppose the guidance and recommend that Islington schools do not accept the DfE’s definition of “extremism”.

• call on the NEU nationally to support members in challenging this guidance and defend members who fall foul of the guidance by continuing to pursue good educational practice in their classrooms.


B)    Motion on Emergency Programme for Jobs, Services and Safety

 

(1)      Islington NEU notes the launch of the People Before Profit: Emergency Programme for Jobs, Services and Safety. (See below)

(2)      We believes that this programme can help to shape the resistance we need to prevent workers and the poorest and most vulnerable bearing the brunt of a health emergency and economic crisis not of their making.

(3)      We resolve to adopt this programme and to consider ways we can take up its demands in the interests of our members, and publicise them.

(4)      We agree to to inform the organisers of the Emergency Programme  (at healthworkercoronavirus@gmail.com ) of our support.

 

An Emergency Programme for Jobs, Services and Safety

Tens of thousands of have unnecessarily died from the Covid pandemic thanks to a government that was ill prepared and put profit ahead of peoples safety. Now, alongside a Covid pandemic that is far from over, we face an avalanche of job losses, more austerity and more attacks on pay and conditions.

We need a fightback across workplaces and communities to demand that ordinary people wont pay for the crisis.

 

Extend the Furlough scheme – Defend Jobs: The withdrawal of the governments Furlough scheme will have a devastating impact on jobs: it must be kept in place for at least the next 12 months and be extended to cover all workers regardless of what type of contract they are on – no worker should be left behind. Government should take an ownership stake in firms in return for such support. We demand a 35 hour week for workers with no loss of pay. Firms making profits must be barred from making mass redundancies and shareholder dividend payments should be frozen. Major firms that go bankrupt should be nationalised without compensation with workers provided with a job guarantee. We will support any group of workers that strikes or occupies their workplace to defend jobs.

 

Safe workplaces: Both government and employers are pressing to drive ever more people back to work despite the real dangers of a second Covid wave and the utter failure to put a credible test and trace system in place. Unions must sign off any agreements over what constitutes safe working conditions and the right to refuse to work in unsafe workplaces must be strengthened. High quality PPE must be provided. In workplaces without unions, the democratic election of workers’ reps should be legally provided for, with a right to involve a trade union if requested. We support any group of workers that refuse to work in unsafe workplaces.

 

Tax the wealthy – dont make workers’ pay for the crisis: The richest 1,000 people in UK have an estimated combined wealth of £743 billion alone! We need a massive transfer of resources from the rich to protect jobs, services and living standards. The top rate of income tax was 83 percent until 1980 – this should be reinstated. An immediate wealth tax should be imposed on all those with wealth of £1 million and over. We need a Living Wage for all workers of at least £15 per hour and this must be extended to cover those working in the gig economy”. We support all workers fighting for better pay. We reject any argument that pay freezes will save jobs – we need to fight on every front.

 

Public ownership of services and end outsourcing: Services like Royal Mail, rail, energy and water must be brought back into public ownership. The outsourcing of services to private firms across the health service, civil service, local government and elsewhere must be reversed – no more two tier workforces, one with less pay, security and poorer sickness entitlement.

 

For an immediate massive programme of green investment: We need to re-purpose” industries like aviation, car production, engineering to urgently address the climate crisis, end dependency on fossil fuels and to provide a million climate jobs.  We need a massive programme of investment in council housing and in public transport.

 

A welfare system that provides real social security and dignity: Universal Credit and the Bedroom Tax must both be scrapped and benefit sanctions halted. Benefit payments should be massively increased and the moratorium on housing evictions must be maintained.

 

Get organised!

 

Build fighting unions and solidarity with every fightback: to defend the interests of workers we need to rebuild the trade union movement. We need to draw millions of workers facing job losses, low pay, lack of safety at work into the unions – and we need tens of thousands of new reps and activists who can help organise campaigns, strikes and protest to defend workers. Unions that fightback can recruit members and enthuse a new generation of activists. Every group of workers that fights back should be flooded with messages of support, donations to their strike fund and invites to address union and labour movement meetings. We demand the repeal of all the anti-trade union laws.

 

Equality and unity - dont let them divide us: Governments that want to shift the burden of a crisis onto the shoulders of workers and the poor will also turn to more scapegoating, division and racism to help push their attacks through. We will organise to challenge and oppose all forms of racism, sexism, homophobia and transphobia and discrimination against disabled people. Only though unity based on equality can we fight back effectively.

 

C)    Youth Climate Summit

 Islington NEU Recognises that 

·  the COVID crisis is one manifestation of environmental blowback,

·  while the world has been preoccupied with it, climate breakdown is accelerating,

·  the DFE is failing in its responsibilities to the next generation and to Article 12 of the Paris Agreement in rejecting the appeal of the student strikers for a full curriculum review to make what we teach and learn adequate to the scale of the crisis we face,

Islington NEU therefore

·  welcomes the initiative taken from below by teachers and NGOs to launch the Youth Climate Summit this November and the Go Zero Campaign that flows from it.

·  resolves to promote this initiative and campaign with the Local Authority, local MATs, schools, our Reps, members and our school communities; with a view to getting the maximum possible participation and organisation flowing from it.





General Meeting 4th March 2020

posted 6 Mar 2020, 05:39 by NEU Secretary   [ updated 3 Sept 2020, 04:25 ]

UCU Strike Action


Islington NEU congratulates our UCU university colleagues for taking hard-hitting national strike action in defence of their pensions and over pay, workload, contracts and inequality.


Their readiness to vote for action in sufficient numbers to overcome Tory anti-union strike ballot rules and to take effective nation action is an example to the rest of the trade union movement.

We recognise that strikers will need financial support from other workers to sustain their action and agree to make a donation of £500 to the UCU hardship fund.

We also agree to do whatever else we can to provide support and solidarity to our UCU sisters and brothers.


Amendments to Conference Motions

Motion 24 - Climate Emergency

Add

Conference notes

1) Global carbon emissions must reduce sharply from this year to stop climate breakdown.

2) We need a global Green New Deal; with all countries contributing according to their resources.

3) The November Glasgow COP will show who is meeting this challenge.

4) We need to campaign strongly leading up to, at, and during it.

5) 91% of students surveyed said schools should teach more about the crisis, over half of teachers that they were ill equipped to do so, 40% that their SMT was disengaged.

6) The success of the climate themed learning week in February.

7) Unlike the UK, Finland and New Zealand are making the climate crisis the core of their curriculum - including recognising student activism as the way to process ‘eco anxiety’.

Conference instructs the Executive to work with other unions and environment campaigns to:

1) Press government to transform our curriculum to meet the climate emergency.

2) Publish a special edition of Educate dedicated to COP26, the transition that is needed, ‘teach the truth’ and eco-anxiety.

3) Sponsor transport to the COP; and support a week of action all over the country during it; including a climate themed learning week.


Motion 49 - Exclusions

Add point 5 in Conference notes:

5. the increased use of ‘zero-tolerance’ behaviour systems impose rigid and often discriminatory expectations on

students, which fail to make reasonable adjustments for students entitled to consideration under the Equality Act

and often focus on trivia such as supposedly inappropriate hairstyles

 

Add after iii

Conference:

a. notes that an increase in AP provision and the development of Secure Schools whilst not restoring funding for

early intervention is an inefficient use of public money

b. believes that private providers shouldn’t be involved in management of AP/Secure Schools

c. celebrates the dedication of our members working hard in AP and calls for them to have the recognition,

remuneration and resources they deserve

 

Under Conference instructs the Executive:

Delete e and replace with:

Campaign against the expansion of privately run Alternative Provision and for better funding for inclusive

education within the education system.

Add h. Campaign for behaviour systems that support rather than penalise students, whatever their culture and

background, which are in accordance with the Equalities Act, and do not discriminate against students

Add i. Commission research into the extent of zero-tolerance behaviour policies in schools, and their effects

Add j. Affiliate to No More Exclusions


 



General Meeting 26th November 2019

posted 29 Nov 2019, 07:51 by NEU Secretary   [ updated 29 Nov 2019, 07:51 ]


Confirmation of "State Branch" Secretary and Chair

In future we will tie this in with District posts as we have no significant membership outside this sector. 

Tony Buttifint confirmed as Secretary Pippa Dowswell as Chair.

 

3) Nominations for National Officer Positions.

The meeting agreed to make nominations for all three posts. The following were nominated.

Treasurer. - Alyson Palmer

Vice President - 2 posts.  Kauser Jan and Daniel Kebede. 

Equalities and Membership. - Louise Regan. 


4) Motions for Annual Conference

As only 4 motions were tabled voting was on the basis of whether we wanted to submit each motion or not. No reduction to 6 required. All 4 motions were agreed unanimously

(1) Exclusions

 Conference:

Notes that the Timpson Review of school exclusions highlighted that:

1. Students with Educational Special Needs, Black and Gypsy/Roma and Traveller children and those eligible for free school meals are disproportionally excluded from school and from education, whether through short term or long term formal exclusion or the illegal off-rolling of students

2. There are huge discrepancies between schools that seek to include and those where there is a high rate of exclusion

3. Exclusion can leave children socially isolated and educationally disadvantaged, and puts them at risk of becoming involved in crime and the ‘school to prison’ pipeline

4. Parents of children excluded feel alienated and unsupported by the education system and the Independent Review System

Conference further notes the Review:

(a) did not address fragmentation of the education system through academisation and the introduction of free schools and the lack of local democratic control, which has allowed schools to exclude without consequences

(b) failed to address how the stereotyping of black children and institutional racism underlies racial disparities in rates of exclusion

(c) that so called ‘zero tolerance’ approaches to behaviour do not support the needs underlying challenging behaviour

(d) proposes to expand Alternative Provision 

Conference instructs the NEU Executive to:

1. Campaign for a fully inclusive, properly funded education service where exclusion is reduced and ultimately ended

2. Continue to campaign for all schools to be subject to local democratic scrutiny

3. Campaign for schools to publish data on exclusions and the destinations of students no longer attending, and to be accountable for these students and the funding of their education

4. Campaign to ensure that managed moves only take place when properly resourced alternative provision is in place

5. Campaign against the expansion of Alternative Provision and for better funding for inclusive education within schools

6. Challenge the failure of government to address the racial and class inequalities in rates of exclusion, and to work with educators and parents of students affected

7. Call for the reform of Independent Review Panels, including returning their power to compel schools to accept back a student.

 


(2) Scrap the NAHT/NEU Agreement on Avoidance of Disputes

 

Conference notes 

A. the agreement between the NAHT and the NEU entitled Avoidance of Disputes. 

B. That the agreement includes a commitment that, if it is enacted in any dispute, ‘NAHT and NEU paid officials will.... seek to agree status quo ante’ and ‘a cooling off period’ with no clear written requirement to get the agreement of members, workplace reps or lay officers to this course of action. 

Conference believes that this agreement

I. is of much more benefit to the NAHT than to members of the NEU. In practice it can make it even more difficult for our members, even where their support for collective action is overwhelming, to effectively challenge unreasonable 

practices by a head teacher

II. is not consistent with our commitment to be a lay-led Union.

Conference instructs the Executive to write to the NAHT to inform them that, on the basis of a Conference decision, the NEU is withdrawing from the agreement with immediate effect.

 

 

(3) CLIMATE EMERGENCY

Recognising that the labour movement has to lead the Just Transition to a sustainable economy and society, NEU Conference instructs the Executive to declare a climate emergency.

 

Conference instructs the Executive to:

1.    Immediately review all national union activity and infrastructure to draw up a plan for complete eradication of greenhouse gas emissions and begin implementing it as rapidly as possible - with a report on progress at the 2021 conference.

2.    Ensure that education in Just Transition is built into our reps training and call on Districts to incorporate it into local training. 

3.    Take these points to the TUC to propose the rest of the trade union movement does the same.

4.    Call for all schools, LAs and MATs to declare a climate emergency and to plan a path to zero greenhouse gas emissions on the basis of the maximum possible action within existing arrangements- while identifying action or investment needed from central government to remove structural obstacles.

5.    Work with the school students movement, other unions and campaigns in informing and mobilising our members in support of actions up to and beyond the November COP in Glasgow.  


(4)  BAD AIR AND HOT SUMMERS

Conference notes: 

i) though it is illegal to transport live cattle in temperatures above 30C there is no maximum legal temperature to work in.

ii) current union policy is that a temperature of 26C is a trigger point for ameliorative measures

iii) global heating being real, heat waves are becoming more frequent and intense, frequently making badly designed classroom conditions unbearable.

Conference further notes:

1the significant health impacts of polluted air along with the contribution of the transport sector to carbon emissions.

2.the need for significant investment in clean efficient properly regulated public transport and genuinely affordable housing so people can live within walking or cycling distance of work.

3.that traffic reducing measures in residential areas reduce traffic overall - there is no displacement effect.

Conference instructs the Executive to support Districts or MAT branches in taking a pre-emptive ballot at the beginning of the summer term to cover members in refusing to work in classrooms that are above 26C and to negotiate "chill days" with employers.

 

Conference further instructs the Executive to support:

a) traffic calming and elimination measures around schools including "school streets" and to promote this with local authorities;

b)promote where possible the reduction in school car parking spaces and the introduction of car pools and other measures including public transport subsidies where feasible".


5) Motions submitted by Members

(A) NO MORE EXCLUSIONS

 Agreed unanimously

This district notes:

1.     The leaked government plans for a ‘harder narrative on discipline’, including support for the use of ‘reasonable force’. 

2.     The rise of ‘zero tolerance’ approaches to behaviour, and increasing acceptance that this is ‘what works’, without regard for their impact on young people’s mental health and access to education for our most vulnerable learners.

3.    There has been a 40% increase in exclusions in the past three years.

4.  Exclusions disproportionately affect black young people, with Special Educational Needs, on Free School Meals - compounding the injustice. A black boy with SEN on FSM is 160 times more likely to be excluded than his peers.

5.    Informal exclusion, ‘off-rolling’, is being used by schools to remove students who may adversely affect their position in league tables leading to students spending time inappropriately in ‘home education’ or in a PRU. 

6.    The fact that academies and free schools are not accountable to the local authority/ community currently limits the powers of local councils to address exclusionary practices in schools.

7.    No More Exclusions is a grassroots coalition movement in education with a focus on race-disparities in school exclusions and inclusive quality education for all.

 

This district believes that:

1.     ‘Zero tolerance’ approaches are inhumane, ignoring the key idea that all behaviour is communication. They promote surface level compliance without addressing the needs underlying challenging behaviour.

2.    ‘Zero tolerance’ approaches are leading to students being informally excluded from classrooms and to young people spending inappropriate and harmful amounts of time in isolation within school;

3.     Policies that aim to control students’ behaviour, rather than helping them control it themselves, undermine the very elements that are essential for motivation: autonomy, a sense of competence, and a capacity to relate to others. 

4.     The upward trajectory in exclusions are a warning that the ‘school-to-prison pipeline’ is becoming an institutional reality.

5.    The increasing number of African Caribbean and other minority groups being excluded reflect both a historic injustice and evidence of institutionalised racism. 

 

Therefore, this district resolves to:

1.    Raise awareness of this issue in our staff rooms and locally, including writing to the Council and our MP with our concerns.

2.     Campaign for education policy development in support of:

i.                    More funding for schools, to adequately address the needs of all children.

ii.                  The abolition of league tables;

iii.                The promotion of approaches to behaviour management that are humane and respect the rights of the child.

iv.                 The overhaul of official exclusion practice and outlaw unofficial practice.

v.                   Bringing academy and free schools under local democratic control;

vi.                 Legislation for zero exclusion policies and to only consider managed moves when adequate, properly resourced alternative provision is already in place.

 

3.    Disseminate research to members on approaches to behaviour management that are humane and respect the rights of the child.

4.    Promote these approaches to head teachers.

5.    Support members in raising concerns about and challenging inhumane and unjust behaviour management practices in their schools.

6.    Make a donation of £100 to support the work of No More Exclusions.

 


(B) Planning on Action to Defend our Nursery Schools

 

Agreed unanimously

This district notes;

1.      The extra 3 terms funding announced by the Government in Nov 2019 was a result of the campaigning of our members along with the NAHT, Early Education, The APPG, many staff, governors and parents up and down the country.

2.      Previous government policy has failed to commit to the funding necessary to ensure the existence of our maintained Nursery schools past July 2021.

3.      This continued hand to mouth method of funding will continue to undermine the sustainability of the  model of state maintained nursery schools in the early years sector

4.      The maintained nursery school sector will not survive unless the funding needed is committed by government.

5.      Our demand to extend state maintained nursery provision remains. 

 

This district believes;

1.      That the NEU executive have carried out the mandate of conference 2019 to work with and be part of the national campaigns to save nursery education in a number of ways.

2.      This has strengthened our organisation within the state maintained nursery school sector.

3.      That if there is no announcement of sustainable funding as demanded by our campaign by the summer term 2020 we will need to step up our action to defend our members and the education they provide in this sector.

4.      State maintained nursery schools should be placed within the maintained schools funding block as this is the sector they are part of and their funding should be in parity with this sector.

 

This district now instructs the executive to;

 

1.      Call a meeting of our nursery school members in the summer term at Hamilton House with the purpose of organising the way forward for our campaigning and build on the solid work that has already been done to organise this sector.

2.      Put in place the necessary steps to ballot for national strike action that will begin in the Autumn  term.

3.      To organise meetings with NASUWT,UNISON, GMB & NAHT  to seek to involve them in joint strike action where their members are working in Nursery Schools.

 

(C) Whittington Hospital

 Agreed unanimously

Islington NEU deplores the suing by Grenfell Tower refurbishment contractor Rydon of Whittington Hospital for withdrawing, following the fire and the 71 deaths that occurred as a result of it back in June 2017, its previous procurement offer to Rydon subsidiary Ryhurst to manage and provide capital for the redevelopment of the hospital estate.

 

We recognise that this is the consequence of Conservative policies that:

a)  has underfunded hospitals since 2010, while still demanding that they upgrade their health facilities.

b) encouraged the selloff of NHS land through implementing the Naylor Report that required hospitals to sell their land to finance capital improvements

c) caused capital-starved hospitals to apply to private corporations to finance estate improvements at the initial stages

d) has encouraged the use of private companies rather than in-house NHS services for across-the-board NHS provision - catering, medical, social etc, etc

 

We will therefore

i)   support Defend Whittington Hospital in their campaign to stop Rydon suing the Whittington Hospital

ii)  donate £100 to support the DWHC campaign

iii)  campaign for a government that opposes NHS cuts and privatisation and any selloff to Trump’s corporations, and that will re-establish an NHS that is publicly-run,publicly-owned and free for all, including migrants.

iv) support the protest against Rydon’s legal action outside Royal Courts of Justice in the Strand from 9 am on Monday 9th December.

 

 

General Meeting 14th May 2019

posted 21 May 2019, 05:21 by general office   [ updated 21 May 2019, 05:21 by NEU Secretary ]

Motion A)    Climate Change

  Islington NEU recognises that the latest UN report shows that:

 1. Without more rapid action there will be at least a 3 degree temperature rise by 2100;

2. 1 degree rise above pre-industrial levels has already led to increasing fires, hurricanes, floods and droughts;

3. The transition to zero-carbon society to keep below a 1.5 degree increase is the most urgent problem facing humanity and is technically feasible; and

4. The obstacles are entirely political.

 We believe that:

 i. The consequences of failure to act – will be severe for our members, our communities, the children we teach and in the worst case could threaten our survival. 

 ii. This needs immediate Government investment for a qualitative shift within 12 years, including a significant shift in the focus and aims of education.

 iii. The current Government’s market solutions are failing, leading the UK to miss its targets.

 iv. The vote at NEU’s national conference in April to hold a conference about climate change in the autumn, affiliate to Campaign Against Climate Change and support the student climate strikers, is welcome and must be acted on in every association. 

 v. The recent protests and strikes by students and Extinction Rebellion (XR) have been an important step forward in the fight to save our planet. They need our support. A number of NEU associations have already begun to show their solidarity by supporting students, and joining the XR protests.

We welcome

A focus on the DFE during the next student strike on May 24th calling for curriculum change.

The call from the ITUC for June 26 to be a day of workplace action during which union Reps ask their management's what the plan is to make their workplace zero carbon 

We agree to:

 a. Re-affiliate to Campaign Against Climate Change;

 b. Support local and national actions by XR, Campaign Climate Change and other organisations, including sending B&D NEU banner on their marches and actions;

 c. Write to Islington council asking that they join the growing number of councils across the country that have declared a ‘Climate Emergency’; 

and calling for this to be followed up with action whereby Islington oversees, facilitates and encourages a process whereby

  • ·         All schools sign up to be Eco Schools
  • ·         All schools have insets on sustainable development
  • ·         All schools to have a pathway to zero carbon; to comprise both an audit what they can do now to reduce their carbon footprint and a list of things that could be done with the right investment; as well as determining how the current curriculum delivered in the school can be enhanced and supplemented to reflect the centrality of the climate emergency, pending and feeding into a national review.

 d. Support the 24 May Student Climate Strike day of action, and subsequent days of action; drawing on the following ideas:

 In the lead up to the strike

​Hold school meetings to discuss what action members feel they can take.

​Consider holding a ‘Climate Emergency Day’ where the focus of all lessons is on climate     change. 

​Encourage everyone to wear stickers and badges during the week beginning 19 May.

​Invite students to hold assemblies on the climate crisis

​Set up displays

​Incorporate lessons about climate into the curriculum

​Letter writing to the government.

​Make posters

​Invite speakers from Campaign Against Climate Change, Friends of the Earth and XR groups into school

On the day of the strike

​Take the maximum action that members are confident to take.

​Short of strike action you stand outside the school gates together at the start of the school day or at lunch time.

​Stand together in the play ground at break and lunch. Hold hands or posters.

​Take group selfies supporting the students or demanding we teach about climate

​Discuss forms of protest as part of citizenship

 

Motion B)    Afilliations

 Islington NEU district notes that as the NUT we affiliated to the following organisations:

·         Islington Trades Council

·         Cuba Solidarity Campaign

·         Palestine Solidarity Campaign

·         Venezuelan Solidarity Campaign

·         Anti Academies Alliance

·         Stand Up to Racism

·         Stop the War Coalition

·         Campaign against Climate Change

·         CND

·         Marx Memorial Library

·         National Pensioners Convention

·         Woodcraft Folk

 We therefore agree to continue with these affiliations.

 We further agree to affiliate to the British Rohingya Campaign

 .

Motion C)     TransformEd Podcast

Islington NEU agrees that:

·  more and more people working in education have not had significant teacher training that furnishes them with ideas on how our education system could be different; nor do they remember a time when things were different; nor do they have the time to reflect on the purpose and methods of their work.

·  in this atmosphere the current educational hegemony sees teachers follow management’s oppressive demands which are driven by narrow data performance targets and performance related pay.

·  a cadre of neoliberal gurus offer school managers simple solutions that fit in neatly with the status quo.

·  progressive ideas in education do not receive enough attention, this despite an appetite for change as indicated by the numbers leaving the profession and corbynmania.

Islington NEU agrees to donate £100 to the London Young Teachers Network to support the starting of a podcast called TransformEd, which will be led by young members in the union with the aims of:

1.      Promoting critical education in schools.

2.      Promoting interest in education policy and support for policies supported by our union.

3.      Increasing union engagement.

4.      Offering counter hegemony to neoliberal intellectualism in education.

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