NUT National Executive Meeting, 11th November
School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions
The Union is seeking to make a joint submission from all the teachers' unions. It was agreed that the Union needs to make a joint submission to the review body, but also needs to make a campaigning response to our members. The NUT does not want to get into discussion with the government over their recommendation that only teachers earning under £21,000 should get a pay rise. Most worrying is that the government is threatening the 'introduction of greater freedoms and flexibilities' consistent with their commitment to 'reduce the rigidity of the existing pay and conditions framework'.
There was consideration given to the present position in relation to the threats faced by centrally employed staff.
Sixth Form College Members' Pay
There was a presentation from Andrew Morris over pay negotiations for sixth form colleges. The employers have made a derisory offer of 0.75%. It was agreed to conduct a consultative ballot of members in sixth form colleges with a recommendation to reject the offer. It was also agreed to have a second question on the ballot regarding taking action up to and including strike action, again with a recommendation for supporting industrial action. That consultative ballot is now underway.
The newly updated NUT workload advice booklet has been sent out into schools and a shorter version is being produced for NQ1s. The campaigning focus will be centred around planning.
It was reiterated that this will be the focus of our campaign against cuts and we need to get information out to our members about action. There are fresh comments, in Hutton's call for more evidence for his final report, that are even more worrying than were announced in the interim report last month. For example, he asks, “Should a full state pension and a full public services pension ensure people have adequate resources in retirement? Or should room be left for individuals to make their own arrangements?”
A motion on pensions was agreed unanimously. It called for the production of campaigning materials, plans for meetings, rallies and demonstrations and a ballot for strike action in the spring term. A copy of the motion is printed below.
Executive motion on pensions
The Executive recognises that:
a) the proposals of the Hutton Commission;
b) the decision to switch the indexation of pension benefits from RPI to CPI;
c) the inclusion in the Comprehensive Spending Review of an assumption that public sector workers will pay 3% more of their salary in pension contributions
together represent a much bigger threat to our pensions that the proposals we fought in 2005.
The Executive instructs the General Secretary to bring to the December meeting of the Executive a timetable of campaigning and action to take place before the Hutton Commission produces its final report in Spring 2011.
This timetable should include:
i) the production and distribution of campaigning materials for use with members and the public;
ii} plans for meetings, rallies demonstrations and lobbying activities;
iii) a ballot for strike action to take place in the spring term.
In order to support this work the Executive agrees:
a) that the Union should use its electronic facilities to inform members about this campaign and survey their views on all aspects of it;
b) that Executive members should work with Regional and Wales Offices in supporting divisions and associations in building this campaign.
Finally, the Executive recognises that the Union should seek the maximum co-ordination with other public sector unions in all of the above activities and instructs the General Secretary to approach other unions with a view to this and bring a report to the December meeting of the Executive.