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Suffolk Division NUT

Information for Division Council Meeting on Wednesday 13th November 2013

Venue: Belstead Brook Hotel, Ipswich   18:30 for 19:00

Click for Information from the previous meeting and from recent meetings.

Circulars and Information From HQ & Executive

  1. 13-162-SC - PHILIPPINES TYPHOON: Save the Children urgently need help to reach as many children as possible. Please help by donating to the Typhoon Haiyan Appeal at: https://secure.savethechildren.org.uk/donate/emergency?sourcecode=B13013217&utm_campaign=typhaiyan&utm_medium=email&utm_source=typhay
  2. 13-161-S&C - TEACHER IMPRISONMENT - INDIA : Soni Sori, 37, is an Indian school teacher, peaceful indigenous activist and loving mother of three. She has been held since 2011 on charges of aiding Maoist rebels in India. These charges are believed to be false and that she was arrested because she spoke out against human rights violations by the state. HQ asks members to sign the petition for Soni's immediate release and for an investigation into her allegations of torture: http://helpgetthemhome.com/soni/?gclid=CNmM-rLIr7oCFbIPtAodWj0A0Q
  3. 13-159-SC - DIVISION VOTE AT SPECIAL MEETING OF THE EXECUTIVE – 25 OCTOBER 2013: a report on the Division Vote re. coordinating strike action.  A copy of this circular will be available at the Division Meeting of 13th November.
  4. 13-158-SC - DATA PROTECTION: the NUT’s ICT guide for officers, guidance on keeping data safe while organising and other relevant support documents.
  5. 13-157-ECR - APPRAISAL - SETTING OF OBJECTIVES: New guidance on securing fair and reasonable objectives as part of the appraisal process is available at: www.teachers.org.uk/campaigns/appraisal.  There is a clear risk that teachers may be denied pay progression if their objectives are unreasonable. There is also a risk that the closer link between appraisal and pay will undermine the value of appraisal for professional development purposes.  The new document NUT Guidance on Objective Setting should be read in conjunction with the Joint NUT/NASUWT Appraisal Checklists for England and Wales, the Joint NUT/ATL//NAHT Model Appraisal Policy. These are all available at: www.teachers.org.uk/campaigns/appraisal.
  6. 13-156-RM - NATIONAL OFFICERS ELECTION 2014-2016
  7. 13-154-SC - NATIONAL LOBBY OF PARLIAMENT FOR PALESTINE: Wednesday, 27 November, from 2.00pm-6.00pm,
  8. 13-153-EE - THE BLAIR PEACH AWARD
  9. 13-152-ECR - GAS MASKS AND ASBESTOS: an asbestos exposure incident in a school in the South East of England where children and staff handled and wore a Second World War military service gas mask with a crocidolite asbestos filter gauze. Although all types of asbestos are dangerous, crocidolite is recognised as the most deadly.  There were millions of military service and civilian masks produced at the start of WW2. Most have now been destroyed but many remain in circulation and may be viewed as novelty items. It is possible that they may be used as props in school drama productions. All staff should be aware and check.
  10. 13-150-SC - PALESTINIAN CHILD PRISONERS: Every year, around 700 Palestinian children aged between 12 and 17 are abducted and jailed by the Israeli military, according to UNICEF. They are usually accused of throwing stones at vehicles of the forces of occupation – a crime punishable under Israeli military law by up to 20 years in prison.  To highlight this situation, Action for Palestinian Children has organised a 10 day UK speaking tour, which will take place from 10-20 November, with two speakers from Defence for Children International (Palestine).  The London meeting will take place on UN Day of the Child, Wednesday, 20 November at 6.30pm and is co-hosted by the SOAS Palestine Society. It will be held in Room V211 in the Vernon Square Campus in Penton Rise.
  11. 13-149-SC - ACTION UPDATE
  12. 13-148-ECR - REVIEW OF TRADE UNION FACILITY TIME IN SCHOOLS
  13. 13-147-SC - COLOMBIA: FREE HUBER BALLESTEROS
  14. 13-146-SC - PALESTINIAN CHILD PRISONERS: (see 13-150 above)
  15. 13-145-OM - DATE OF YOUNG TEACHERS’ CONFERENCE 2014: FRIDAY, 6 TO SUNDAY, 8 JUNE 2014
  16. 13-144-S&C - STRIKE ACTION: UPDATE
  17. 13-143-RM - ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2014 – BRIGHTON: FRIDAY, 18 APRIL TO TUESDAY, 22 APRIL 2014
  18. 13-142-SC - ACTION FOR PALESTINIAN CHILDREN: urges associations and divisions to sign Action for Palestinian Children’s pledge to ensure the rights of Palestinian children are upheld in accordance with international human rights treaties and international law. Sign the pledge here: http://action4palestinianchildren.org/sign-the-pledge-2/
  19. 13-141-SC - CALENDAR: ON THE GLOBAL STAGE: encourages associations and divisions to use the newly published NUT on the Global Stage calendar to celebrate international solidarity and build local activity.  International commemorative days are observed by the United Nations to raise awareness of an issue or to commemorate or celebrate an international event or group of people. The NUT uses commemorative days to develop activity among members and to build solidarity with other teacher trade unions worldwide. The new calendar, which is being sent to all schools, highlights commemorative days that have particular relevance to teachers, trade unionism and education.
  20. 13-140-E&E - CAMPAIGNING FOR EDUCATION: FRED AND ANNE JARVIS AWARD 2014, REMINDER
  21. 13-139-SC - MARCH AGAINST FASCISM IN LIVERPOOL – 12 OCTOBER 2013
  22. 13-138-RM - NATIONAL OFFICERS’ ELECTIONS: 2014-2016
  23. 13-137-SC - INTERNATIONAL DAY OF THE GIRL CHILD: 11 OCTOBER: Established by the UN in 2011, International Day of the Girl Child takes place annually on 11 October.  The 2013 theme is Innovating for Girls’ Education.
  24. 13-136-EE - BREAKING NEWS – BARONESS DOREEN LAWRENCE TO ADDRESS THIS AUTUMN’S BLACK TEACHERS’ CONFERENCE
  25. 13-135-ECR - REVIEW OF TRADE UNION FACILITY TIME IN SCHOOLS: The DfE published a ‘call for evidence’ on 19 September 2013, to gather views from employers, school leaders, representative organisations, teachers and members of the public about trade union facility time. The Department has cited, as its objective, the desire to ‘know how facility time could be managed more transparently and how we can ensure it makes the most efficient use of taxpayers’ money.’
  26. 13-134-S&C - UPDATE ON STRIKE MARCHES AND RALLIES - 1 and 17 OCTOBER
  27. 13-133-ECR - DE-DELEGATION: A JOINT UNION TOOLKIT FOR LOCAL/DISTRICT UNION REPRESENTATIVES: The Toolkit includes guidance on how to handle the next round of schools forum meetings and how to persuade all schools to participate in local facilities time arrangements. It includes a suite of joint union letters to be issued nationally from the unions and additional letters which may be adapted and issued by local officers as circumstances dictate.
  28. 13-132-SSEE - SCHOOL TEACHERS' PAY - 2013 STPCD AND NUT GUIDANCE: The final version of the 2013 School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document (STPCD) has now been published. and can be found at http://media.education.gov.uk/assets/files/pdf/s/130806%202013%20stpcd%20master%20final.pdf
  29. 13-130-S&C - SUSPENSION OF ACTION IN WALES ON 1 AND 17 OCTOBER 2013

Report from MG, EOTAS and Soulbury Caseworker:
  1. MG has completed a final draft of an NUT statement on EOTAS in Suffolk, entitled "What has happened to EOTAS in Suffolk?", for Scrutiny, Councillors and anyone else who is prepared to listen.  It will be sent to selected recipients when checked and agreed by Graham.  Some NUT members have contributed ideas, corrections and amendments to earlier drafts.
  2. The Collective Grievance lodged with EOTAS management in July has still not been resolved - they can't manage to follow any of the agreed procedures! There was some progress in October when Gavin Bultitude chaired a meeting with HR and EOTAS management, somewhat loosely set up under the "appeal" stage of the Collective Disputes Procedure.  We had to accept this process, under protest, in order to seek a resolution. HR at last accepted that gaps between out-of-school teachers' assignments do not constitute a break in service, unless there is break for another reason/purposes, such as on retirement and re-employment.  So at last the principle of the Prater judgement has, for the first time, been accepted.  However, they have not put this in writing and we are still waiting for the outcome of their final considerations of what we will accept as meeting the Grievance.  At the present time, the statement sent out to staff in July, (that 1:1 tutoring prior to September 2012 does not count towards continuous service under any circumstances), has not been withdrawn.  So the Dispute continues, and if they do not acknowledge the legal situation in full, we must consider other means of proceeding.
  3. The LA having announced the withdrawal of the 4'rce contract to provide an EOTAS centre at Old Fen Park, Lowestoft, the Section 188 letter went out pre-selecting those EOTAS staff assigned to OFP for redundancy from EOTAS.  The Union has objected and has put in its latest observations to the Section 188 proposals.
  4. The LA tried to impose the Corporate Change policy on teachers in EOTAS at OFP.  The Union objected and, after a considerable amount of lobbying, the LA agreed to apply the redundancy handling procedure for teachers, (Schoolsurf HR Document P26).  They were persuaded not to announce individual redundancies until the laest possible moment (beginning of February) and have now offered Voluntary Redundancy, but only to those who were directed to work at OFP.  The Union's have objected because, if there is a need to reduce EOTAS staffing, then the "pool of selection" should be all those who work for EOTAS which is now combined with PRUs.  So there should be a freeze on all recruitment in PRUs and EOTAS posts, at least in the North, and the LA should exercise its power to redeploy centrally employed teachers within those parts of the service it manages.  The LA has not accepted this, of course, but it will be grounds for appeal against unfair selection and unfair dismissal.
  5. There has been another case of HR refusing to implement the preliminary evaluation stage of the JNC Industrial Injury Agreement re. a long-term illness.  This has led to a situation where it has become clear that written evidence of bullying at work had not been collected and passed on to OH in accordance with the JNC Agreement.
  6. The LA held a second EOTAS "Conference" on November 1st.  It was more of a PD half-day. Georgina Green announced that they were delighted with OFSTED inspections which said that Safeguarding was "fine" in EOTAS.  She did not add that the HMI doing one of the safeguarding inspections was so concerned at what he found, outside Safeguarding, that he undertook a quick full inspection and rated the multi-site provision on a 4 (inadequate).  This has not officially been shared with staff as yet.
  7. No 46 EOTAS Centre has had to be closed twice since the start of term.  In October, it was closed after a Fire Safety inspection.  Staff and pupils were transferred to a rather overcrowded KAP (Westbrook) for the duration. Much work has had to be done to comply with the indaquacies identified, although other, less essential, but desirable work is not going to be done.  The second, shorter, closure happened when staff recorded a Carbon Monoxide level of around 30ppm, which is above the safe level where vulnerable and young people can experience flu-like symptoms.  Staff and pupils have been reporting headaches and drowsiness ever since they began working at No 46.  H&S checks oddly stated that this was due to high Carbon Dioxide concentrations, not Monoxide.  However, CO2 does not register on a CO tester.  The advice from the LA has been to open the windows.  The union will be pursuing this shortly - staff are testing regularly.
  8. The Management Board at Kingsfield PRU have formally agreed to take Westbrook/KAP and No 46 into an extended PRU under their governance.  Staff will be transferred in April 2014, but for all intents and purposes, those former EOTAS centres now form part of the PRU.  EOTAS in West Suffolk not longer exists as a separate entity from PRU provision.
  9. MG will report on the personal grievance on behalf of a member who was unfairly and improperly suspended, with implications for all centrally employed staff.
  10. In Ipswich, there has still been no announcement of the start of consultation on the successful application of Parkside and St Christopher's PRUs to become academies.   These were due to become academies in October/November, but this has clearly been put off, with no new date firmed up.  If it is going to be in January, the consultation should really be starting now.  In the meantime, staff of Montgomery Road have been transferred to the management of St Christopher's (and therefore, later, to be employed by the Academy). Kesgrave Centre has been closed onto Parkside, and all staff transferred will also become employees of that Academy.
  11. In Lowestoft, OFP has been closed and the staff are going to be made redundant in April (see above).  In the meantime, they have been transferred to Attic PRU.  The Head of Attic PRU has also taken on, in the last two weeks, management of the 1:1 ZH team in the North.
  12. In Ipswich the ZH team of 1:1 tutors is now managed by a Lead Teacher.
  13. The issues around the West Suffolk Hospital Teacher post and the position of the Specialist Behaviour Support Teacher are both still under discussion.
  14. Otherwise, it has all been very quiet!

 


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