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Anyone In The Nut And Striking?


Guest tinkerbell
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Guest tinkerbell

There are 3 of us at my place out of 4.I have to tell the HT tomorrow.What are others doing?

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Guest Wolfie

I'm in the NUT but am the only one at the Children's Centre and really don't want to strike - it's not going to have any impact at the Centre other than me getting stressed about the work I could be doing! So hopefully not!

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I am not in the NUT - but head thinks might have to close the school because over half the teachers are in NUT and you are not allowed to cover their classes with other teachers/LSA's - all very uncertain and confusing at our school!

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I've just had a letter home from my daughter's school (secondary) to say that a significant number of NUT members teach at school - but that they won't be able to tell us anything about how the strike will effect the school until they go back. I'm sure a lot of pupils are hoping for an extension... :o

 

Serious issue though: I know that teachers don't take this sort of action lightly.

 

Maz

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Guest tinkerbell

No striking isn't taken lightly as you say.

At first I felt reluctant to strike as I have a huge commitment to the children,parents and staff at school...but you have to look beyond your own set up and think that you are in the NUT and the ballot is to strike...you join a union to support you if anything goes wrong so I feel we need to commit otherwise a some one posted on the tes website join a different union!

Tinkerbellx

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What will the end result be though?, bearing in mind that out of 200,000 NUT members, only 70,000 have responded to the ballot. The trouble with teaching is that there are too many unions - 6 I know of!

Lack of joint action doesn't look good in the eyes of the public, who will have no sympathy - they will just focus on the usual theme of 'Well they get all those holidays what are they moaning about!?'

 

Look at how doctors have fared recently - got more money, reduced hours and yet retained public support. Doctors have any government over a barrel because they have ONE union fighting their cause. With teachers the govt knows that they can play one union off against another - we are too disparate. Union members need to lobbytheir own union for this to change.

 

A word of warning too, a day's strike may affect your pension. It used to count as a break in service -worth checking out!

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Could I just ask - do any of you know how much notice HT are required to give parents or if they have the right to ask staff if they plan to strike?

 

I am not in a union, but the impact of the strike will be on the pre-school for me, as myself and so many of my staff have their own children to care for if schools are closed. We are trying to draft a letter to our parents to let them know we may have to close, but I don't really know when to make the decision for definite. We have decided the impact of so many extra older children will be detrimental for our youngest children, so although we could just about cover our ratios including our own children, we have decided to close if the schools we are connected with close.

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Hi Holly - well the letter I received from school was saying just that: we'll make a decision what to do when we know exactly, but we won't know til 21st April and will send a letter home then. If I were in that position (and I guess I might be - will need to check!) I would write to parents saying that it may be possible to close and that a final decision will be made by a certain date, and let them know which method of informing parents of the final decision will be used. At least that way they will be able to make contingency plans.

 

Hope you get it sorted!

 

Maz

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I know my head got an email from the LA today telling him to inform parents that teachers are on strike therefore classes won't be running on the 24th unfortunately today was a PD day (no children) so the message can't be passed on until we return on the 21st after the Spring break.

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We go back to work on Monday and I'm sure it will be hot topic there. I'm union rep at work, but for ATL not NUT. There's me and 1 other member in ATL and she doesn't work on the strike day! All the other teachers are NUT so I'm expecting school to close.

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Thanks for your replies. As I thought really. I will finish the contingency letter and discuss with the staff next week how soon before the day we will make the decision. I had been considering leaving it until the night before as I know my children's school is pretty slow at letting us know stuff in general and I have thought it could be home time on the Wednesday before I get a letter from them! However I might just say we will make final decision on the Wednesday and then make all the calls from the pre-school phone rather than my own during the day.

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I know my head got an email from the LA today telling him to inform parents that teachers are on strike therefore classes won't be running on the 24th unfortunately today was a PD day (no children) so the message can't be passed on until we return on the 21st after the Spring break.

Oh dear. That won't allow parents much time to get their childcare organised, will it?

 

One of our local schools subscribe to Parent Mail (none of my children's schools do, unfortuantely). So they use email to tell parents about anything they feel they need to know - PTA events, cancellation to after school clubs etc. Will be very useful in the case of proposed strike action.

 

Maz

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Have you heard on the news that Steve Sinnott leader of the NUt has suddenly died today? Shocking news and with sympathy to his family.

The Nut says the strike will still go ahead.

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Have you heard on the news that Steve Sinnott leader of the NUt has suddenly died today? Shocking news and with sympathy to his family.

The Nut says the strike will still go ahead.

Yes - what a tragedy for his family. Shocking to lose him at such a young age. I heard Gordon Brown has paid a handsome tribute to his commitment to teaching when the news was announced.

 

Maz

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hi

as a parent I am discussed that with such strikes they in fact disrupt children's learning and yet they moan about parents having time off in the term time for holidays!! xD

 

I am a parent who never have holidays in term time yet my children may suffer due to teacher strikes.

 

what is the real reason for strike? want more money well wuoldn't we all what ever job we are in!! :o

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Guest tinkerbell

Inflation is at 4% and teachers pay is going up 2.3% for the next 3 years.

 

There are collegues ,especially down south who are finding it tough going as new teachers...many will leave the profession as there peers from uni are far better paid in other avenues of employment.The knock on effect to the children and parents will be larger class sizes and the choice of high quality teachers will not be there.

 

I am part of the SMT in school and find striking totally alien ,but as I am in the union and would seek their help if necessary I need to 'honour' my membership.

 

Tinkerbell

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I agree Tinkerbell - none of the teachers in my school like the idea of striking - we are worried about disruption to our pupils and we dont want to damage relationships with our parents - which we have worked hard to earn, but as you said if we needed our union we would expect them to support us - this has been hot topic in our staffroom.

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The letter from the NUT explaining the issues is quite long so apologies

 

"INFORMATION LEAFLET FOR PARENTS AND THE PUBLIC

 

3 April 2008

BACKGROUND

The National Union of Teachers (NUT) has called on its members to take strike action on Thursday, 24 April.

This leaflet explains why the NUT has decided to take this action.

PUTTING CHILDREN FIRST

Our campaign, ‘Fair Pay for Teachers’, is in the best interests of children as well as teachers. We've always put the interests of children at the centre of our campaigns. What's good for teachers is good for the children they teach!

When teachers are paid properly they feel secure, morale is high and teaching is able to compete with other career paths to recruit the best graduates.

When teachers' pay falls in value, schools find themselves unable to attract and keep the teachers they need to reduce class sizes, give more one to one attention to pupils, teach specialist subjects and generally deliver the first class education service that all our children deserve. This is the experience of the last 30 years.

For us in the NUT, strike action is the very last resort. The decision to strike was taken only when all other options had been rejected. We are ready to talk to the Government about teachers’ pay at any time.

PAY CUTS FOR TEACHERS

The NUT’s decision to ballot members for strike action was taken after the Government announced that teachers’ pay would go up by only 2.45 per cent from September 2008. From your own experience you will know that this is much less than inflation.

The overall inflation rate stands at 4.1 per cent at the time of writing. Increases for many essential items - such as food, housing, electricity and petrol - are much higher than the overall 4.1 per cent.

Average pay settlements are at 4 per cent. The combination of high inflation and higher pay increases for other jobs means that teachers face pay cuts in real terms and a reduction in the value of their pay compared to others.

You may have heard that the teachers’ pay award of 2.45 per cent is better than the awards imposed on other public sector workers such as nurses and the police. This, however, is the fourth year in a row that teachers have been offered pay rises which are less than inflation.

 

Teaching needs to attract a high number of graduates each year in the teeth of competition from private sector employers as well as other public sector employers.

TEACHERS’ PAY - THE FACTS

In the NUT we always base our case on the facts; our case for fair pay for teachers is no exception.

It is true that teachers’ pay has increased in value since 1997. These increases made it easier for schools to recruit and retain teachers - you may have noticed this in your local schools. This is no reason now to cut their pay!

In recent years, however, the value of teachers’ pay has been reduced. Teachers have been given pay increases lower than the value of inflation in every year since 2004. The cost of living for teachers has increased significantly faster than their pay. Individual teachers have already lost out on hundreds, and in many cases thousands, of pounds. If the proposed pay cuts are implemented, teachers will lose out even more.

Cuts in teachers’ pay are likely to lead to greater recruitment and retention problems for schools. Your child’s school may find it more difficult to recruit and retain the teachers needed to support your child’s education.

When schools experience recruitment and retention problems, teachers may have to teach outside of their subject specialism to cover the lack of teachers qualified to teach certain subjects. There are already problems in recruiting teachers of particular subjects such as mathematics, science and foreign languages. These problems will only get worse if teachers’ pay cuts are not reversed.

Teaching is a graduate profession and needs to compete with other graduate employment. When potential teachers consider their career options at university, they are likely to be put off teaching when they see that they can earn more money in other graduate professions. They can see that, on average, other graduates not only start on higher pay than teachers but receive increases in pay much more quickly.

The NUT wants to prevent the “boom and bust” in teachers’ pay that has been a problem in previous decades. On a number of occasions in the past, teachers have seen their pay increase only to then have those gains wiped out as pay was held down. These “boom and bust” periods create teacher shortages, sap teachers’ morale and make teaching unattractive to potential recruits. The end result is damaging to the education service and to the interests of your children.

YOUNG TEACHERS

Schools make decisions on the pay of individual teachers that are often influenced by the school’s financial position. This means that teachers have to overcome a number of hurdles to access higher levels of pay. It will normally take a newly-qualified young teacher at least a decade to reach the highest pay point for a classroom teacher.

Young teachers in particular face significant problems. In addition to struggling to get on the housing ladder and facing high increases in essential items like energy and transport, young teachers also have to pay off their student loans.

The problems faced by young teachers mean that they are less likely to stay in the teaching profession. Evidence shows that pay in other graduate professions is much higher than in teaching, so young teachers will be lost to teaching if teachers’ pay continues to fall in value. The investment in the training of those young teachers will be lost to the profession, as will the benefit to children of that training.

CONCLUSION

At the same time as their pay has been cut, teachers face a heavy workload. Recent research has shown that most categories of teacher work more than 50 hours a week - hard work for the benefit of children. Surely they should expect appropriate recognition for this work in terms of their pay?

The Government has said that we have a teaching profession to be proud of - but at the same time tries to cut teachers’ pay. The Government has welcomed the rise in educational standards, but refuses to reward teachers for the part they have played in this.

To create a first class education service for the benefit of our children, we need to make sure that teachers receive proper, professional pay levels. We expect a lot from our teachers: dedication; commitment; and long working hours. The least they should expect from the Government is fair pay for their work.

Please support our campaign!

Fair pay for teachers!

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hi

as a parent I am discussed that with such strikes they in fact disrupt children's learning and yet they moan about parents having time off in the term time for holidays!! :(

 

I am a parent who never have holidays in term time yet my children may suffer due to teacher strikes.

 

what is the real reason for strike? want more money well wuoldn't we all what ever job we are in!! :o

 

Its probably not helpful to confuse the issues around the strike with holidays in term time - the teachers are not striking to get time off during the term for holidays after all. The whole point of a strike is that they do cause disruption and decisions to take them are not taken lightly. Teachers do a highly important job - and as such should have the recognition and pay to reflect this. xD

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I am part of the SMT in school and find striking totally alien ,but as I am in the union and would seek their help if necessary I need to 'honour' my membership.

Good for you Tinkerbell. It will affect me no end, as a parent, as a preschool on school premises, as a school governor, but I too feel that teachers in the union should strike if that is what was voted for!! The cost of living is increasing day by day and wages should reflect this, especially if they are expected to do the same job!

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Guest Wolfie

I'm REALLY struggling with this one.

 

My gut reaction is to say no...but I know that I would expect the union to support ME if I needed them to and so feel that I should. However, I run a group for SEN children on a Thursday morning and we've just had a little two year old with Down's Syndrome start who has made a big attachment to me - the first person other than his Mum. He'll be heartbroken and inconsolable if I'm not there and I can't bear the thought of letting him down and halting the progress that we've made in encouraging him to separate from Mum - it's one of the targets on his IEP because his development needs to be assessed in more detail and the professionals are finding it hard to do when he clings to Mum all the time.

 

Ooooh, really hard.....!

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Like you wolfie - i am really struggling with this. I feel that i should strike, as you say, to support the union because i would want their help and support if i needed it - but then another colleague pointed out that i do pay my union fees each year to ensure that i could recieve help and support from them shou;d i so need it!!!!!!! I really don't know - nobody in my school has yet definatly siad they are taking strike action either! Decisiosn decisions eh!

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