Socialist Worker

Schools round-up: Protest at music cuts

Issue No. 2642

The protest by the Musicians Union

The protest by the Musicians Union (Pic: Musicians Union)

A hundreds-strong protest by pupils and parents last Tuesday forced Labour-run Midlothian council in Scotland to step back from slashing the music service

School boss scores own goal in attacks

NASUWT union members at Granville Academy in Derbyshire struck last Thursday.

Workers are resisting “adverse management practices” that hit their conditions.

The union said it has “deep concerns” about policies, including lesson observations, performance management and disciplinary procedures. The school is run by the de Ferrers Trust.

NASUWT national treasurer Russ Walters compared de Ferrers Trust boss Ian McNeilly to ­ex-Manchester United ­manager Jose Mourinho.

He said a letter that criticised strikers sent by McNeilly to parents during the strike was similar to Mourinho ­publicly attacking players after bad results.

Strikers said there was “low morale” at the school because of excessive monitoring.

They plan to strike again on Tuesday of next week, and on 6 and 7 March.

Sadie Robinson

Workers at Wyggeston and Queen Elizabeth 1 College in Leicester held a two-day strike on Wednesday and Thursday of last week.

It followed a 24-hour walkout on 6 February. And NEU and NASUWT union members say more strikes will follow after management failed to respond to an offer of talks.

They are in dispute over attacks on their terms and conditions as part of a restructure.

NASUWT general secretary Chris Keates said, “These restructuring plans would leave some staff on worse pay and working conditions.”

She said agreements made when Wyggeston & Queen Elizabeth 1 College merged with Regent College “have not been maintained”.

Alan Hackett, NASUWT national executive member for Leicester, said, “What is the point of us sitting around with the employer negotiating a transfer if they then change it within weeks?

“If the employer wins this battle it means that any school can just ignore Tupe transfer regulations and set their own conditions.”

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NASUWT union members plan to strike over pay in Jersey next Tuesday.

The union said an offer has been imposed that fails to take account of real terms cuts to workers’ pay.

It said that by 2020 workers’ pay will have been cut by well over 10 percent in real terms since 2008.

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