Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/619/9325

From The Socialist newspaper, 7 April 2010

NUT conference again calls for action on workload

Merlin school teachers on their picket line in March 2008, photo Martin Powell-Davies

Merlin school teachers on their picket line in March 2008, photo Martin Powell-Davies

The National Union of Teachers (NUT) annual conference, which took place in Liverpool over the Easter weekend, showed that the conditions teachers now face are similar to those of workers across the public sector where pay and conditions are being eaten away.

Jane James

The most anger has been shown over the issue of workload. For a number of years teachers have had to mark unnecessary tests along with unnecessary grading work and checks on children, resulting in work taking up evenings, weekends and holiday time. A report has shown that teachers are now doing 18.7 hours of extra work a week, meaning that they are in effect working the first four months of the year for free.

In 2008 and 2009 the conference voted for a national ballot on action over workload, up to and including strike action. However, in both years the union executive did not carry out the resolution. An amendment was passed with this year's motion on workload, which calls for preparation for a ballot to start now and for the ballot to begin on 19 April when the summer term starts and support should be built for action.

The resolution was passed unanimously, so now teachers have to wait to see what the leadership will do. Though there is a 'left' majority in the union leadership, it does not automatically mean that they will actually implement the decisions of conference.

Some of the debates on workload incline towards individuals saying: 'I'm not working any longer, I've done my contractual hours and I'm going.' However, because of the levels of bullying, it has been pointed out that it would be better for teachers to take national action together.

Privatisation

Other issues raised at the conference included over-sized classes and the continual privatisation of education in terms of academies, the so-called 'free school' policies that mainly benefit middle-class people and other initiatives that attack state education.

Another conference issue has been supply teachers, showing the casualisation taking place in schools where 10% of the teachers are supply staff working for agencies who are not paid the full rate for the job. One conference speaker demanded that supply teachers must be unionised immediately and given the rate for the job, and that the union has to fight to stop 'teaching on the cheap'.

On 16 April the outcome of the ballot against SATs tests will be announced. However, the ballot has only been for head teachers and deputy heads in the NAHT and NUT. The action is only at the level of heads not opening test papers. Ordinary classroom teachers have not yet been balloted, and most of these teachers do not know that this protest is going on. Many teachers are angry that they have not been encouraged to take part in action over SATs.

A Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) meeting took place in Liverpool during the conference which was attended by 60 people including TUSC candidates in the audience as well as on the platform. Alex Gordon, the recently elected RMT rail union president who spoke at the TUSC meeting, was also available to speak at the teachers' conference particularly about the court injunction that stopped the RMT strike planned for 6-9 April, but the NUT executive turned that offer to speak down.

A very successful Classroom Teacher meeting was attended by 37 people and more people signed up to receive the Classroom Teacher circulars, which are produced by members of the Socialist Party and others.

Socialist Party member and Lewisham, south east London, teacher Martin Powell-Davies, recently elected to the new union executive, spoke at the conference on a motion against cuts by whichever party leads the next government.

Unison: vote Roger Bannister

At the Liverpool TUSC meeting (see main article), held during the NUT conference, TUSC candidate in Manchester Gorton and Socialist Workers Party member Karen Reissman called for 'one left candidate' in the Unison general secretary election. However, it was clear that by this she meant supporting Labour Party member Paul Holmes who supports continued Unison funding of New Labour.

All TUSC supporters should support Roger Bannister in the Unison election, a Socialist Party member who has consistently called for a break of Unison with New Labour as part of reclaiming the union as a democratic organisation that fights for its members.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 7 April 2010:

Defend jobs and services - Fight for a workers' alternative - Vote TUSC

General Election 6 May: A Socialist Challenge


Socialist Party editorial

Mobilise to defend the right to strike

London Underground workers balloting


Socialist Party election campaign

Stand up for the millions, not the millionaires!

Reject the parties of cuts and privatisation

Socialist Campaign launched in Coventry

New Labour meltdown in Stoke

Making an impact in Huddersfield

Hazel Must Go! opposes cuts to Salford NHS

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition


Socialist Party campaigns

Cuts bite in north west

March to defend the welfare state

Tories reveal yet more anti-gay bias

'Free schools' or free-for-all?

News in brief


Socialist Party workplace news

NUT conference again calls for action on workload

Ex-Visteon workers continue fight for pensions

Industrial news in brief


Socialist Students

Mobilise students and workers to defeat cuts and tuition fees


International socialist news and analysis

Kazakhstan: "change the politicians - or they will change you!"

Mass protests and strikes continue to shake Algeria

Tekel workers brutally attacked by police


Comment

The real lessons of the poll tax


 

Home   |   The Socialist 7 April 2010   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  




Related links:

NUT:

triangleSchools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

triangleEscalate summer strike wave into coordinated action to defeat the pay cap

triangleSchools and teaching: A perfect storm of cuts, underfunding, excessive workloads and low pay

triangleEducation cuts forced back

triangleEducation cuts: Tories buckling under public pressure

Teachers:

triangleSchool spend is behind eastern Europe

triangleWorkers' struggles in Peru: eyewitness report

trianglePublic sector wages - Pay up!

triangleUnions call for action after Grenfell

TUSC:

triangleToo much to cross the Mersey

triangleSurveying Labour councillors - will they fight cuts?

triangleLabour mayor needs to stop all cuts

Socialist:

triangleConference on state spies: who's watching who?

triangleSocialist Students 'welcome' Hillary Clinton to Swansea

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

19/10/17

North West

Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

18/10/17

Democratic rights

Conference on state spies: who's watching who?

18/10/17

Leeds

Striking back against sackers' charter at Leeds Uni

18/10/17

Royal Mail

Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

18/10/17

PCS

Balloting members on the pay cap

18/10/17

Art

'Dazzling' Bad Art show points to socialist future

18/10/17

Council

Sheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

18/10/17

South West Wales

Hundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP

18/10/17

NHS

Uprising to save the NHS!

18/10/17

Socialism

Can you donate to the Socialism 2017 appeal?

18/10/17

East London

No cuts - hands off King George A&E!

18/10/17

North London

North London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

18/10/17

BAE

Nationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems

18/10/17

Schools

Schools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

18/10/17

Swansea

Socialist Students 'welcome' Hillary Clinton to Swansea

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle19 Oct Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

triangle18 Oct Russia, October 1917: When workers took power

triangle18 Oct Tories torn - bin them now

triangle18 Oct Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangle18 Oct Balloting members on the pay cap

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party imploding...drive out the Tories

More ...

triangle21 Oct Birmingham: NSSN Solidarity Forum

triangle23 Oct Chesterfield Socialist Party: The continuing struggle for abortion rights

triangle24 Oct Liverpool Socialist Party: The October Russian Revolution 100 years ago to the day

triangle25 Oct Salford Socialist Party: The October 1917 Russian revolution

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2