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

Previous meeting (May 2006)

Notes for Division Annual General Meeting: June 29th 2006


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

Cornhill Suite, Belstead Brook Hotel

Apologies already recorded: For EC only: Peter Dunnett. For Council / Both: Paul Widdowson

greenblob = Items for Executive Committee blue dot= Items for Division Council

Section A: National with National Executive Report

blue dot Report from Glenys Shepherd.

  1. blue dotPENSIONS - Full details of the Pensions deal. All members should be receiving "Your Pension Your Say" from HQ with a ballot form for or against ratification of the deal. The Executive is urging members to vote "YES". Deadline for receipt of ballot papters to the Election Reform Society is noon on 9th June 2006.
  2. Executive News 125
  3. Teachers in small schools - recruitment materials
  4. CASE: request to renew annual subscription (£20.00)
    Circulars from HQ, etc:

    The DfES has published three documents for consultation.  The consultation documents are:

      • the draft ‘The Education (School Teacher Performance Management) (England) Regulations 2006’;
      • the DfES consultation paper, ‘Performance Management for Teachers and Head Teachers’; and
      • a paper from the Rewards and Incentives Group (RIG), ‘Teachers and Head Teachers’ Performance Management Work – In Progress Guidance’.

    Edited Extracts from NUT Commentary: The NASUWT and ATL have agreed to more observations. Their proposal is a change from the current regulations’ requirement of a minimum of one occasion per year for classroom observation to “no more than three hours”.  The NUT’s guidance, which importantly was agreed as joint guidance with the NASUWT, sets a limit of 60 minutes per cycle for classroom observation for performance management purposes.  The NUT’s guidance sets a limit of one observation per year as the maximum requirement for each reviewee

    In contrast, the draft regulations could lead to a trebling of the amount of time and number of visits reviewees are required to be subject to for classroom observation.

    Unlike the NUT’s current guidance, which covers all forms of classroom observation, the RIG guidance excludes OFSTED and local authority initiated observations and is silent on the most powerful generator of classroom observation, i.e., that of head teacher initiated observations for monitoring purposes.

    • The workload implications for both reviewers and reviewees are significant.
    • There are no limitations on the number of reviewees for which reviewers can be required to be responsible.
    • Release time for classroom observation is referred to only in the draft RIG guidance. 
    • No guidance is given by RIG on time limits for the writing of performance management statement.
    • There is no reference to the opportunity costs of setting aside directed time for performance review meetings.
    • For the first time, the proposed regulations would require reviewers to have regard to pay determination against the STPCD’s pay criteria.  The draft regulations intend that each reviewee’s pay progression be determined by the outcomes of the performance review
    • The consultation document says that RIG intends to provide a model pay and performance policy which will illustrate how schools can achieve simplified arrangements for appeals.

    A summary of the NUT’s initial response:

    The regulations for performance management should limit the requirements for classroom observation to no more than one classroom observation per teacher within the review cycle.  Classroom observation should not exceed 60 minutes per reviewee within each cycle.

      • The reviewee should be required to agree to no more than three objectives with the reviewer.
      • Reviewers who are not head teachers should not have responsibility for making recommendations on pay progression.
      • A maximum limit of three should be set on the number of reviewees for whom each reviewer should be responsible.
      • There should be an appeal system external to schools for reviewees whose objections to their review statements have not been resolved within their schools.
      • Reviewers should not obtain from any other person written or oral information on a reviewee’s performance without consulting that reviewee.
      • Performance review meetings should take place in directed time.  Class or group sizes should not increase for other teachers as a result of reviewers leaving their own classes to conduct classroom observations.

    Divisions should emphasise to local authorities that consultation on the performance management regulations closes on 19 July 2006, and that there should be no presumption about the results of the consultation.  Divisions should press local authorities to agree that no advice be sent to schools until there has been full consultation by the local authority with all the recognised trade unions on the final regulations.

  8. blue dot06-109-EEO - TLRs and BLACK AND MINORITY ETHNIC TEACHERS: In November 2005, the NUT wrote to Ruth Kelly MP, to raise concerns about the Government’s apparent failure to implement measures which enable the monitoring of trends in movement on the upper pay spine for teachers. The DfES has a specific duty under the Race Relations (Amendment) Act to monitor for any adverse impact of its policies and to publish the results of such monitoring exercise. DfES "unable" to collect this data. Secretary has therefore written to LA to ask for local monitoring and publication of data.
  9. 06-108-EEO - NO PLACE FOR A CHILD: members asked to lobby the Home Secretary and their MPs through the campaign website  The Refugee Council, Save the Children UK, Bail for Immigration Detainees, together with Scottish Refugee Council and Refugee Council have joined forces for the campaign to stop the detention of children by the UK Government.
  10. greenblob06-107-O&A - ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2007 - HARROGATE: Conference diary, accommodation booking form, select list of hotels
  11. blue dot06-106-EEO - NUT POLICY STATEMENT ON SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS: The briefing draws together NUT guidance and current NUT policy on SEN.  Divisions are encouraged to use the briefing as a reference document when advising members on issues relating to SEN and when meeting with the local authority to discuss SEN provision, SEN reorganisations or SEN funding. The NUT has also produced a SENCO charter which is on the NUT website and which will be distributed to NUT members who are special educational needs co‑ordinators
  12. greenblob06-105-M&C - UNION DIARIES 2006-2007: £3.10 each or 50+ copies @ £2.80, including VAT.
  13. blue dot06-104-EEO - 14-19 SPECIALISED DIPLOMAS : THE GATEWAY PROCESS – 2008
  14. greenblob06-103-EEO - CHANGING SCHOOL CATEGORY – FOUNDATION SECONDARY SCHOOLS The Government has implemented proposals which were set out in its Five Year Strategy for Children and Learners, for a ‘streamlined route’ for community and voluntary controlled (VC) secondary schools to change category to foundation status In its response, the NUT emphasised that foundation status is the least accountable model of school governance within the maintained sector. This circular contains advice to divisions on how to respond to proposals, under existing legislation, for converting from community to Foundation status.
  15. blue dot06-102-COS - PROVISION OF PPA TIME: Survey for HQ arising from Conference to gather evidence of complaince or otherwise by schools.
  17. 06-100-Sals - CHARTERED LONDON TEACHER SCHEME The Chartered London Teacher (CLT) scheme has been introduced by the Government to recognise and reward the skills and expertise of London teachers. It forms part of the Government’s London Challenge strategy to “secure transformation in educational standards and establish London as the world’s leading creative and learning city.”
    It was launched in September 2004 and the first teachers are scheduled receive CLT status in September 2006. Successful applicants will receive a one-off payment of £1,000.
  19. 06-098-M&C - CLIVE JENKINS EUROPEAN STUDY BURSARY 2006/07: The TUC Education Trust offer two bursaries of £800 each to enable trade union members to visit a European Union country in 2006/07. These bursaries are from a trust established by Clive Jenkins, the former General Secretary of ASTMS and a member of the TUC General Council.
    The bursaries will fund a trip to study an aspect of trade unionism, industrial relations, training or employment. They cover travel and subsistence only and no funds are available for any loss of earnings. After the trip, the bursary holders will be asked to write a report for TUC Education. The closing date for applications is Friday, 25 August 2006.
  20. blue dot06-097-Sals - SCHOOL TEACHERS’ PAY AND CONDITIONS: ADVANCED SKILLS TEACHERS (ASTs): The STRB recommended in 2004 that ASTs should be paid on a shorter 18 point pay spine in place of the present 27 point spine. While the Government stated at that time that it would implement this recommendation with effect from 1 September 2006, consultation has only now been completed on the precise arrangements for existing ASTs’ assimilation to the new 18 point spine. The Education (School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions) Order 2006 sets out statutory provisions which will appear in the 2006 School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document together with further statutory guidance. Summary and conversion scale on our website.
  21. blue dot06-096-Sals - SCHOOL TEACHERS’ PAY AND CONDITIONS: SAFEGUARDING FOR MANAGEMENT ALLOWANCES advice to members and in casework on further guidance issued recently by the Rewards and Incentives Group (RIG) on safeguarding for management allowances.
  23. 06-093-CCU - LATER DEADLINE FOR RETURN OF NUT PENSIONS’ CONSULTATION: deadline for receipt of ballot papers extended to 15th June.
    Section B: Regional: Regional Office (Alan Williams) to report.
  26. Casworkers' training: 28th June. Paul Widdowson attended. ER Executive same afternoon cancelled.
    Section C: Division / Executive Committee:
  27. blue dotSchool Reorganisation: Debates Page on has been re-vamped to invite comments from members on the consultation on the future shape of schooling in Suffolk. Secretary has contacted all school reps with a request to circulate to members/Reps. The page includes links to information on the 14-19 proposals, statements from SCC and from the NUT.
  28. Debates Page: We have swopped away from Geek village guestbook because it attracted thousands of spam and spoof entries. When secretary attempted to block these, the page blocked suffolk NUT as well!
  29. greenblobRemodelling of Employee Relations.  More meetings have been held to move towards an agreement with SCC. Not yet decided how the TU delegations will be formed.  General agreement that there will be no voting but will proceed by way of concensus, as with JNC.  Some confusion over Soulbury.  CYPD forum agreed to set up a Soulbury forum, but no dates fixed yet. The first meeting of the "Partnership Board"
  30. greenblobFacility Time: Talks still on-going.  CYPD has found the money to pay schools for the current year's facilities time and we expect payments to be made shortly.  TUs putting in their bids for future facilities funding.  It seems obvious that there must be more time available, because of the increase in casework and meetings. Penny Cook is representing all the Teacher Unions in discussions at Corporate Level.
  31. greenblobCYPD Forum will meet 4 times a year.  First meeting has been held and has begun planning its forward agenda.  NUT seeking formal links and communication between CYPD Service Forum and the local "WAMG" and Education H&S Committee (when activated).
  32. blue dotJNC on 14th June received information on the 16-19 Competition: South and West Ipswich and South Suffolk - information to "competition entrants".   Note, South Suffolk has now been included.  LA stress that "competitors" have to show how their ideas for new provision will (1) ensure breacth and choice, (2) lead to increased participation (3) represent high quality and value for money and (4) meet the "Suffolk 14-19 Thresholds".  The succesful bid will provide (1) a broand range of A-level course, (2) access, over time, to the full range of specialised diplomas (3) a wide range of level 1 and 2 sixth-form courses and (4) access to specialist diploma studies for some 14 to 16 year-olds to support progression and promote improved recruitment post-16.
  33. greenblobJNC received a report (C06/35) on governance arrangement for the "Childrens Trust Partnership Board".  Chaired by the SCC Statutory Lead Member for CHildren's Services, there will be 2 members nominated by Suffolk LGA, 1 from each Primary Care Trust, 1 from Police Authority, 1 from LSC, 1 from Local Probation Board and 2 from the Voluntary sector.  Then other representation to be discussed and agreed with the Accountable Bodies Group". The paper says "Discussion will take place on how to ensure GPs and Schools have a role in the Children's Trust Governance".
  34. Secretary is attending the County Council's Vetting and Safe Recruitment Group.  Draft documents are in preparation, including guidance on questions to ask in interviews, and a common practice re. applications across post working with children and vulnerable adults.
  35. blue dotThe new absence policy for schools , formulated in consultation with the JNC unions, has been published on the Schools Portal and the Suffolk NUT Website. However, the appendices (which deal with operational matters including P&P) were not included in the consultation and the NUT is seeking to re-open discussions on those aspects.
  36. Schools Forum: still not resolved to have JNC representation.  July 4th will be considered again.
  37. JNC received an LA document on Federation of Schools.  Largely just definitions.  Still no real constitutions for the 3 levels of cooperation in the Government's vocabulary: "Hard" Federation; "Soft" Federation and "Formal Collaboration".  At present we only seem to have "loos collaboration" with one head covering 2 schools but everything else staying the same.
  38. blue dotSupply Teachers: the arrangement with EM Direct has ceased and there has been some loss of direct supply employment to agency staff.  SCC has put temporary arrangements in place.  From September,  CSD will be running a County (i.e. LA) supply contact service.  Schools are being informed.  There will be another circular to schools before the launch in September.
  39. greenblobThe fate of The Seagull is still uncertain.  There were rumours that the rescue deal had fallen through, but talks were still going on to approve the business plan, based on Kirkley High, into June.  No outcome announced as yet.
  40. blue dot14-19 Proposals for Suffolk.  Officially, the 14-19 proposals are on hold until the "in principle" review of school organisation is completed (by Christmas 2006).  However, a lot of development work, particularly re. 6th-form courses, is continuing regardless.  The original "preferences" for each of the localites has been published on our website.
  41. blue dotAssault figures: SGR interviewed Secretary on the increase in number of assaults on adults in the 9 month period 1/9/6 - 12/6/6. Of the 68 pupils permanently excluded from Suffolk schools over the last 9 months, 10% were excluded for assault. Almost 3 in 10 assaults in Suffolk schools over the last 9 months were committed by children of Primary school age. One Suffolk pupil is excluded from school every 2 months for attacking an adult. Full figures available on website.
  42. greenblobSection 188 Notices: Newmarket College - 1 teacher selected but some volunteers not accepted.  Thurleston High - resolved by voluntary means. Confirmation of resolution at Crowfoot.
  43. greenblobPresidency of the Division: Michael Sharman would not be certain of being able to attend Division meetings as President until March 2008. SE Suffolk are suggesting that he could take over from then or possibly September 2007. EC to recommend how to proceed.
  44. Teacher Representative
  45. Treasurer: (1) Printer: Update on repair
  46. Conferences: Secretary and Paul Widdowson are attending the Education Conference this weekend.
    Section D: Local Associations
  47. Annual reports received from Bury St Edmunds, Ipswich, SE Suffolk, Sudbury and Waveney & Yoxford Associations.

Date of next meeting: September 28th 2006


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