These notes are up-dated regularly and not completed / finalised until the day before the next meeting.

Previous meeting (November 2005)

Notes for Division Meeting: January 2006

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Suffolk Division NUT
Executive Committee (17:30 - 18:30)
and DIVISION COUNCIL MEETING (19:00 - 21:00)

Thursday, January 26th 2006, Ipswich

Apologies already recorded: For EC/Both: Gary Gascoyne, Andrew Guite, Paul Widdowson (course), Graham White. For Council: Sharon Cozens

u =Items for Executive Committee

¤ =Items for Division Council

Section A: National with National Executive Report

¤ Report from Glenys Shepherd.

  1. EXECUTIVE NEWS NO. 121
  2. Executive News No 120
  3. NUT News 1: Where we stand on the White Paper
  4. Form 18 received, Representation at Conference. Completed for M Goold and G Gascoyne.
  5. Form 423/120 received (Plan of work, etc) for grant application to HQ. Deadline 31st March.
  6. Press Release: Steve Sinnott comments on the new DfES guidance on dealing with allegations by pupils against teachers published 21 November: "A lot of hard work has gone into producing this guidance in an attempt to ensure that allegations of abuse are dealt with fairly and quickly and to protect teachers from the damaging impact of false allegations. Its proposals are very welcome as far as they go, in particular the emphasis on avoiding delay and ensuring that suspended teachers are not left in isolation but are supported during the period of any investigation. However the opportunity for confusion and conflict between national and local guidance will continue. There will be a minimum of three different sets of guidelines that will have to be followed when an allegation is made. There is no certainty that there will not be conflict between them. This could lead to inconsistency in the treatment of teachers depending on which area of the country they work. Without the opportunity to ensure that records of malicious false allegations are removed entirely from their records, teachers will be vulnerable to such allegations blighting their careers."
    Circulars from HQ, etc:
  7. 06-015-SALS - SCHOOL TEACHERS' PAY: UNION RESPONSE TO THE STRB REPORT OF DECEMBER 2005 AND RESPONSE OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE
  8. u 06-014-M&C - TEACHERS BUILDING SOCIETY: requesting that the Division deposits its reserves in a Treasurer's 25 day account.
  9. 06-013-M&C-LT - LOCAL TRAINING : NAME CARD
  10. 06-012-M&C-LT - LOCAL TRAINING : EQUIPMENT CHECKLIST
  11. 06-011-M&C-LT - CASE STUDIES FOR SCHOOL REPRESENTATIVES : A MODULE FOR LOCAL TRAINING
  12. 06-010-M&C-LT - 'THE NUT : WHAT'S IN IT FOR YOU' : A MODULE FOR LOCAL TRAINING
  13. 06-009-M&C-LT - MEMBERSHIP RECRUITMENT : A MODULE FOR LOCAL TRAINING
  14. ¤ 06-008-CCU - EDUCATION WHITE PAPER: THE ON-GOING CAMPAIGN
  15. u 06-007-M&C LT - A HANDBOOK FOR LOCAL TRAINING: EC Asked to recommend training programme for Division in 2006.
  16. u 06-006-COS - NUT HEALTH AND SAFETY WORKING GROUP: 2006-2008: inviting nominations
  17. ¤ 06-005-EEO - OUT-OF-HOURS CHILDCARE: In June 2005, the Government published the Extended Schools Prospectus. This sets out the Government's plan for primary and secondary schools to offer year round extended services from 8.00 am-6.00 pm, either at single schools or as part of clusters of schools which would be available all year round and would offer a range of activities for young people. The Government wants all schools to offer extended services by 2010. NUT is concerned at implications for teachers in such schools. u There is a survey to be sent to the LEA and a questionnaire for the Division to fill in.
  18. 06-003-O&A - EXECUTIVE ELECTIONS 2006-2208
  19. ¤ 06-002-SUP - CHANGE AFFECTING MEMBERS OF TEACHERS' PENSION SCHEME
  20. 06-001-O&A - REGIONAL OFFICER - LONDON WEST REGIONAL OFFICE
  21. 05-189-SALS - ACADEMIES, MAs AND TLRs
  22. 05-188-M&C - IDUE GOOD PRACTICE FORUM :(International Development Union Education)THURSDAY, 19 JANUARY 2006
  23. 05-187-CCU - EDUCATION WHITE PAPER: LOBBYING YOUR MPs
  24. 05-186-SALS - SCHOOL FUNDING IN ENGLAND 2006-07 AND 2007-08
  25. ¤ 05-185-SALS - SCHOOL TEACHERS' PAY: STRB REPORT DECEMBER 2005 AND THE RESPONSE OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE: information on the recommendations of the STRB's Fifteenth Report and the Secretary of State's response published on 5 December 2005. Teachers' pay scales, including the Main and Upper Scales, TLR payments, SEN allowances and the Leadership and other scales, will be increased by 2.5 per cent from 1 September 2006 and by a further 2.5 per cent from 1 September 2007. Management allowances will, however, remain frozen at their April 2003 levels where they continue to be paid. Attached to this circular is a summary of the STRB's recommendations set out in its December 2005 Report and the Secretary of State's response and proposals for implementing those recommendations. It also provides an initial NUT response on each issue.
  26. 05-184-O&A - EXECUTIVE BY-ELECTION: DISTRICT 21 - RESULT - Tim Lucas elected unopposed.
  27. 05-183-EEO - TOM HURNDALL EDUCATION FUND
  28. 05-182-M&C - NATIONAL TRAINING FOR LOCAL OFFICERS: JANUARY 2006 - JULY 2006
  29. 05-180-EEO - MEETING BETWEEN LOCAL LEARNING AND SKILLS COUNCILS(LSCs) AND TEACHER UNIONS: LOCAL LSC/TEACHERS' ORGANISATIONS
  30. ¤ 05-181-SALS - FROM MAs TO TLRs - FURTHER GUIDANCE FOR NUT SCHOOL REPRESENTATIVES AND NUT DIVISIONS/ASSOCIATIONS
  31. 5-179-CCU - BRIEFING FOR DIVISION SECRETARIES - WEDNESDAY, 7 DECEMBER 2005
  32. 05-178-O&A - CONFERENCE MOTIONS 2006: ARRANGEMENT OF AGENDA - FORM 110
  33. 05-177-COS - BEST PRACTICE IN MATERNITY AGREEMENTS
  34. 05-176-SUPN - LOCAL GOVERNMENT PENSION SCHEME
  35. 05-175-O&A - REGIONAL OFFICER - YORKSHIRE/MIDLANDS: VACANCY
  36. 05-174-EEO - DOMESTIC VIOLENCE: SILENCE IS NOT ALWAYS GOLDEN - RESOURCES TO SCHOOLS
  37. 05-173-O&A(AMENDED) - ELECTION OF NATIONAL OFFICERS : 2006-2008
  38. 05-172-SALS - FROM MAs TO TLRs : NUT AND OTHER GUIDANCE
  39. 05-171-EEO - CONSULTATION ON GUARANTEED PLACES ON THE NATIONAL EXECUTIVE
  40. 05-170-H&S - HEALTH AND SAFETY ADVISERS' BULLETIN NO. 76
  41. ¤ 05-169-EEO - QUALIFIED TEACHERS IN THE FOUNDATION STAGESection 2, paragraph 60.3.3 of the School Teachers' Pay and Conditions Document 2005 confirms that the head teacher is responsible for ensuring that all classes in the Foundation Stage, which includes nursery classes, should be assigned a qualified teacher:
     "save in exceptional circumstances, that a teacher is assigned in the school timetable to every class or group of pupils (a) in the first, second, third and fourth key stages, for foundation and other core subjects and religious education; and
      b) in the foundation stage"
  42. u 05-168-COS - THE STANDARD SCHOOL YEARThe LGA has recently written to all CEOs setting out draft dates for the academic year 2007/8, proposing, as a "one-off", a variation on the principle of "four roughly even teaching blocks of six weeks after Christmas and, instead agrees to a pattern of approximately six weeks, six weeks, five weeks and seven weeks." The reasons for this arise from concerns voiced by several local authorities from the conjunction of the timing of Easter (21st-24th March) with an early Whitsun break (26th June):
      - A stand-alone Easter festival followed by just four days of term time before starting the two-week early spring break would lead to high rates of pupil absence. The strong preference of some of their schools and head teachers has been to have an additional full week of teaching time after the Easter Bank holidays.
      - Divorcing the late spring bank holiday from the late spring break would be tremendously unpopular with parents and carers in a year where the Easter festival already falls outside the holiday period
    The Union's position on the school year (as set out in circular 04-150/CoS) remains that:
      - there should be no increase in the length of the school year;
      - the six week summer break, where this has been the norm, should be retained; and
      - the autumn term should not start before the beginning of September.
    The proposed calendar for 2007/8 would not in itself run counter to the Union's policy on the standard school year as long as local authorities take advantage of the 'local flexibility' and ensure that schools break up on or before, 18 July 2008, allowing a full six week break over the summer.
  43. ¤ 05-167-EEO - TEACHER CHILD RATIOS IN EARLY YEARS AND RECEPTION CLASSES The legal position on teacher/child ratios in the early years is as follows: According to Regulation 4 of the Education (Teachers' Qualifications and Health Standards) (England) Regulations 1999 schools are required to have a staff of teachers: "suitable and sufficient in numbers for the purpose of securing the provision and education appropriate to the ages, abilities, aptitudes and needs of pupils having regard to any arrangements for the utilization of services of teachers employed otherwise at the school." The DfES says, however, that any decision about ratios in maintained provision rests with the school and the Local Education Authority and the DfES can only express an opinion. The only statutory provision, therefore, is within the National Standards for Day Care in relation to the non-maintained sector. The maintained sector ratios refer to guidance only, which settings are not legally obliged to follow, although these figures are considered good practice. It is, however, a mandatory requirement for each nursery class in the maintained sector to have a qualified teacher appointed to them.
      Reception Classes Under the Education (Infant Class Sizes) (England) Regulations 1998 a 1:30 ratio for reception classes is mandatory. Maintained Nursery Classes DfES guidance advises that the staff:child ratio should be 1:13. There should be a maximum of 26 children aged 3-5 years to 2 adults (one qualified teacher and one qualified nursery assistant).
      Maintained Nursery Schools DfES guidance advises that the staff:child ratio should be 1:10. There should be a maximum of 20 children aged 3-5 years to 2 adults (one qualified teacher and one qualified nursery assistant).
      Private Nursery Schools with Children Aged 3-5 Years The National Standards for Day Care advise that the staff:child ratio should be 2:20 where the head combines teaching with administration and 2:26 where the head does not teach (one qualified teacher and one qualified nursery assistant).
        Full Day Care, Sessional Day Care and Creches The National Standards for Day Care advise that the ratio should be 1:3 for children aged 0-2 years; 1:4 for children aged 2 to 3 years; and 1:8 for children aged 3-8 years.
      Open Access Facilities The National Standards for Day Care advise that the ratio for children aged 5-7 years, should be 1:13, or lower if the scheme is a public park. . .
      Out of School Care The National Standards for Day Care advise that the ratio should be 1:8 for children aged 3-7 years
      Childminders The National Standards for Day Care advise that a childminder can have responsibility for a maximum of 6 children under 8 years, with no more than 3 under 5 years. Of the 3 children under 5, there should be no more than 1 child under 1 year. Four year old children receiving education are treated as 5 year olds
      THE NUT POSITION The NUT believes that 'quality nursery education' means that which offers a staff:pupil ratio of one appropriately trained and qualified teacher and one qualified nursery nurse to each 20 children. The NUT has argued consistently that where four year olds are in reception classes, they should be given a 'nursery' learning environment (ie. one qualified teacher and one qualified nursery assistant to every 26 children). NUT policy recommends a ratio of 1:23 for reception classes and an action figure of 1:27. The NUT believes that the curriculum should be appropriate to the learning needs of the children and the class should be accommodated in suitable premises with access to suitable outdoor premises.
  44. 05-163-O&A - ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2006 - TORQUAY - FRIDAY, 14 APRIL TO TUESDAY, 18 APRIL 2006: applications for u Conference Documents (Form 429), Observer credentials, Creche facilities, nominations to CBC.
  45. 05-162-FIN and 05-161 FIN;ANNUAL FINANCIAL RETURNS FOR YEAR 2005
    Section B: Regional: Regional Office to report.
  46. Secretary's Report to Regional AGM, Jan 14th 2006 (Penny attended)
  47. Next caseworkers' session: a.m. on Wed 29th March 2006.
    Section C: Division / Executive Committee:
  48. ¤ Suffolk County Council Announces "Savings"
    a) SCC has announced savings to avoid a large increase in Council Tax. Up to 112 fte redundancies in SCC Staff have been announced: a poor settlement from Central Government, historical low spending levels and the new Conservative administration's election pledge to curb council tax rises have led to plans to cut overall SCC budget by £24m, of which £3m is to come from Children and Young People Directorate's "controllable" budget. Schools will get the government's 6.7% rise in direct funding to schools and cannot contribute to any cuts. These must come from central services. The Authority is now consulting on a list of cost saving measures. These will severely impact on Youth and Community services, "county hall" staffing, and our Professional Development Centres are also at risk. Consultation on redundancy has begun (the 90 days) as plans include a projected loss of 112 fte posts from directly employed staff throughout the council.
    b) PDCs - It is proposed to cut £176,300 from "spend on professional development". Meetings have been held with the staff employed or located at the 3 PDCs where closure was a clear option. It now looks as though SSPDC is likely to be retained, because of its particular site and the work including SCITT. The Northern Area PDC is also a SCITT training centre, but the building and access is not good. The WSPDC building is also considered inadequate and LA staff are pointing to 3 training schools in the W Area, suggesting that they could expand to accommodate some of the WSPDC courses. The Authority also claim that headteachers want CPD to be delivered at school or cluster level. Secretary circulated secretaries of the other JNC unions suggesting an interim measure of requesting voluntary subventions from schools budgets to keep the PDCs going, until properly planned alternatives can be set up. All bar SHA have supported this stance. JNC is preparing a letter to go to reps of the JNC unions.
    c) Seagull theatre: The Authority seeks to save £73,000 from "reduced support to performing arts". A meeting at the Seagull theatre on 24th Jan indicated that most, if not all, of this would come from the closure of the Seagull theatre. Rosalind Turner said at a recent CYP Service Forum that this was because the Authority did not run theatres and there was another theatre in Lowestoft. This is to completely misunderstand the work and facilities of the Seagull. Unlike the NSPAC and the WSPAC, the Seagull (drama and dance) is different because it is not subsidised by dual use of premises by the County Music Service (financed by direct grant). NUT is suggesting looking for links with local schools, some use of the Seagull by CMS and raising more income from school buy-ins. We anticipate some reaction from the community in Lowestoft - if the Seagull disappears, the N Area will have significantly less Performing Arts provision than the rest of the county.
  49. u Joint Union action against the cuts. Members of NUT, UNISON, NASUWT, CYWU and NATFHE met on 17th Jan. A Joint Press statement was released. These unions are meeting regularly to compare news and responses from members and to seek to coordinate response. Joint campaining is under way on the Seagull, PDCs and Youth Service.
  50. ¤ School Reorganisation: Paper C06/40 received from SCC. Suffolk has a mixture of 3-tier and 2-tier systems, with a First-Middle-Upper system in the Western and part of the Northern Area, while the other areas have either 11-16 or 11-18 systems. There are no sixth-form colleges. To address the 14-19 changes from 2007 onwards, the Authority and LSC have been quietly making preparations by setting up a number of locality forums, based on Upper/High school pyramids. These forums have already submitted, in confidence, their preferred future structure. A panel has been set up to advise the County Council on the future shape of schooling in each of the localities and this is likely to lead to a range of a different structures throughout the county. Press speculation has alighted on the effect on other schools of building a sixth-form centre in Ipswich and on the possibility of the closure of Middle Schools. The Authority is now offering JNC a special consultation meeting on School Reorganisation.
  51. u SCC Consultation Structure. The new administration is putting the previous Lib/Lab lot to shame in showing how the elected members can talk to the unions. They are setting up three tiers. The top, Corporate (Also called the Partnership) Forum will include elected members, county executive, CSD and representations of all the unions recognised by the Council (JNC unions, UNISON, CYWU, NATFHE, AEP, NAEIAC, FBU, FOA, and RFU. Below that there will be Service Forums and ours will be the Children and Young People's Services forum, under Rosalind and then individual Staff Forums, which will include the current JNC. The CYPD unions have agreed to seek 5 staff forums feeding into the Service forum, including a separate Soulbury staff forum. These meetings have already taken place re. the budget proposals. There have already been 2 meetings of the Corporate Forum, and 2 of the Service Forum. The Service Forum is due to meet fortnightly while the budget and redundancy consultations are on-going.
  52. ¤ Management Re-structuring: Suffolk LA Officers turned out to be ambassadors for RIG rather than give helpful personnel advice. We hear reports of other Authorities supporting the principle of minimum change. Whereas most schools (50+%) appear to have made no major changes, about 10% appear to be radically re-structuring, including handing pastoral posts to non-teaching staff. One Radio Suffolk reporter has picked up on cases of senior staff facing losses of up to £5,000.
  53. Section 188 notices issued (for Easter + September 2006) for Freeman Primary and Roman Hill Middle School. For September only: Crowfoot P, Lakenheath P, Westley MS. More expected soon. ¤ The reasons given at Crowfoot is that the SSC is not viable after guaranteed funding stops in April 2006. This was a proven centre of excellent provision for children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder, but no referrals or transfers have occurred as local schools are keeping their children with the severest special needs in order to maximise income from the SEN Audit. This is an unexpected consequence of the decision to close ASCs and withdraw all discrete SEN funding "by placement". The NUT has begun its response to the Section 188 notice here by protesting to the Authority about the failure of its policy on SSCs in this regard and calling for some re-think on SEN provision in specialist centres.
  54. ¤ Circular in Schools Mail (Nov 2005) to Primary School Reps: UPS1/2/3 is not a promoted post
  55. ¤ Proposed Term Dates for 2007-8
    Draft term dates for 2007-8 (E Region proposal Nov 2005)
    Autumn Term (1) Monday 3 September - Friday 19 October 2007 35
    Half Term Monday 22 October - Friday 26 October 2007
    Autumn Term (2) Monday 29 October - Wednesday 19 December 2007 38
    Christmas Holiday Thursday 20 December 2007 - Wednesday 2 January 2008
    Spring Term (1) Thursday 3 January - Friday 8 February 2008 27
    Half Term Monday 11 February - Friday 15 February 2008
    Spring Term (2) Monday 18 February - Thursday 20 March 2008 24
    Easter Holiday Friday 21 March - Friday 4 April 2008
    Summer Term (1) Monday 7 April - Friday 23 May 2008 (May Bank Holiday 5th May) 34
    Half Term Monday 26 May - Friday 30 May 2008
    Summer Term (2) Monday 2 June - Friday 22 July 2008 37
    TOTAL 195
  56. ¤ Preparation for AGM: (1) Proposed plan of work 2006-2007 to be circulated with papers for this meeting.
  57. ¤ Teacher Representatives: Andrew Guite reports on Scrutiny of the budget (duplicated on red).
  58. Health & Safety: John Osborne to report.
    Section D: Local Associations
  59. BURY ST EDMUNDS has circulated comment and information on the possible demise of Middle Schools.
  60. SUDBURY: Request to support Graham White in the Executive Elections

Date of next meeting: March 2nd 2006 (AGM). Ipswich Area

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