General Meeting 12th March 2014

posted 15 Mar 2014, 08:34 by general office   [ updated 24 Mar 2014, 03:05 ]

  Nominations for NUT General Secretary. Christine Blower was nominated

 Amendments to NUT national conference motions. The following three amendments were agreed:

Motion 23 Academies and Free Schools.

After Conference notes that:

Add new points:

4.The Labour Party has made it clear that it will not reverse the government’s reforms, despite the increasing body of evidence that free schools and academies do not lead to better standards of education, and that there is growing concern about financial mismanagement and, at times, unacceptable financial practices

5.Despite anti-trade union practices and rhetoric, there is the potential to organise in Free schools, asevidenced by the successful strike action at STEM6 in Islington, where members took strike action indefence of their conditions of employment and the right for a trade union to be recognised

6.That many local councillors are aware of the difficulties the establishment of Free Schools creates, andhave been supportive in opposing them, and in defending the rights of teachers and students within them

After “Conference instructs the Executive to”, add new f and g:

f. Call upon the Labour Party, should it become the next government, to convert Free Schools into locallymaintained schools under the aegis of local and democratically elected education authorities

g. Congratulate members at STEM 6 on their successful action, and build on their experience to advisemembers in Free Schools of their rights and the support the can receive from the Union.

Motion 16 General Elections

Add new point 7 and renumber

7. provision of sufficient school places

Add at end:

Conference further believes that

1.            proposals from both the current government and opposition to try to eliminate the budget deficit in one Parliament by means of spending cuts will lead to direct cuts in schools as well as to other areas like welfare, housing and local authority spending that indirectly affect education.

2.            investment in education is one part of an alternative economic strategy to generate environmentally sustainable growth through state led investment in socially necessary and environmentally vital infrastructure.

Conference resolves to work with other Trade Unions to promote this alternative during the election campaign.


Motion 29 Definition of a Teacher

Delete current second paragraph, and replace with:

“Conference believes that the employment of unqualified teachers in schools is a threat both to the education of students within that school, and to the professional development and status of those unqualified teachers, who are likely to find themselves paid less and to be working in worse conditions.

Conference rejects any notion of an ‘unqualified teacher’ status, other than as being a recognised route towards becoming a qualified teacher.”

Amend third paragraph to read:

“Conference therefore instructs the Executive to:

1. Engage with all appropriate bodies to achieve a consensus and regulatory definition of who can be described as a teacher,

2. Support any individual employed in a school as teacher in seeking support in professional development, leading to qualified teacher status, and to being employed on the same terms as qualified teachers

3. To continue to place the demand for a qualified teacher for every child at the heart of our campaign for education;

4. call on whichever party forms the next government to bring forward legislation to this effect.

6.       Emergency motion from Sixth Form College NUT Group

 This NUT group notes that the Coalition Government's funding cuts to Further and Adult Education amount to a 34% cut since 2010. That it is  a scandal that the Government are cutting funding to Further and Adult Education and making lecturers & teachers unemployed when there are one million unemployed 16-24 year olds without education, training or work, who could be in college learning skills and receiving education to help them get a job.

This year there is a further cut as students over 18 are no longer fully funded, the government has failed to fully fund the IB forcing schools and colleges to withdraw from providing the course.

 This NUT group notes

·         that five years ago there were 600 teaching staff at City and Islington College today there are 540.

·         This has led over the last five years to individual members of staff teaching more students with an increased workload.

·         the College has reserves of £14 million with a projected surplus for this year of £0.8 million.

·         The Principal's letter to all staff that the college has had a cut of £2.5m and therefore proposes to make substantial redundancies, reduction of remission hours and an increase in class sizes.

·         Changes to the sfc intake have been proposed to prioritise students by GCSE grade rather than application date.

·         to take more international students


This NUT Group agrees to:

·         Oppose redundancies and any oppose any  further intensification of the workload.

·         Oppose a move away from a widening participation college by selecting students with high grades

·         Raise the issues of funding for the FE and Sixth form sector on the NUT national strike on 26th March.

·         Join UCU on 1st April, Lunchtime protest in solidarity with Lambeth College and to register our anger over proposed College cuts.

·         Send a delegation on the  UCU national lobby of Parliament, 2nd April and lobby the local MP’s

·         To support the UCU organising a local 'Question Time' around the theme of 'What's FE for?' inviting local MPs and community leaders etc.

·         To reaffirm NUT's policy of opposing all job losses and to request a ballot for strike action if management propose compulsory redundancies/intensification of the workload.


 Pay/Pensions/Conditions Campaign

1.  We fully support the planned national one day strike called by the NUT for Wednesday 26th March.

2.  We urge the NASUWT leadership to back the strike too, as it will be all the more powerful if the two main teaching unions are out together.

3.  We pledge to join protests on the day, and also to support campaigning activities in the build up to the strike in order to get the message that we are fighting to defend education from Michael Gove’s assaults across to parents and the wider public.

4.  We support NUT policy which recognises that to beat Gove will require an “escalating campaign” of strikes.

5.  We believe the most effective way to beat back Gove would be to build towards a ballot for an indefinite national strike in the autumn, linked to a massive public campaign to mobilise behind our campaign to defend education - in the way that Chicago teachers in the US showed could win quickly.

6.  In order to ramp up the pressure on Gove and win teachers to support that kind of fight we believe that NUT conference at Easter should endorse a calendar of escalating national strike action - including as a minimum a national two day strike in the summer term, followed by further national action in the autumn.

 An amendment to delete paragraphs 5 and 6 was Lost