NUT Reps Meeting 28/02/2017

Image of YES being tick on ballot paper. NUT & ATL Amalgamation. Please Vote YES.
NUT & ATL Amalgamation. Please Vote YES.

Tuesday 28/02/2017
17h00 to 18h30
Lister Room
East Ham Town Hall
London E6 2RP

 

Kiri Tunks, NUT JV President
Kiri Tunks, NUT JV President

 

NUT & ATL Amalgamation
Speaker: Kiri Tunks, NUT JV President

 

 

Plus:-

The NUT Workload Project
Speaker: Melanie Jenner, NUT National Organiser

Meeting Agenda
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(First published 22/02/2017. Updated 26/02/2017)

President’s address NTA AGM 07/02/2017

Firstly I would like to express thanks to Amy for her term as president and the introduction of a code of conduct for officers and committee members. I propose that this is continued throughout my term of office.

I approach this year with anticipation, interest and trepidation.

Anticipation: We have new officers who have promised much in their election statements. I will be interested to see this in practice and hope that it will mean an improvement in attendance at both Officers and Committee meetings. It will make a change for especially Committee meetings to be quorate and I would expect the courtesy of members of these to send apologies if they are unable to attend.

I also hope that the NTA Schools Refugee Competition will be taken up by more schools this year and actively promoted by all officers and committee members.
[details available on our website]: http://www.newhamteachers.org.uk/?page_id=223

Interest: The planned merger of the NUT with ATL to form a new Teaching Union, dependant on the ballot result, is to be welcomed. Merging can only bring increased strength, although it is unlikely that NASUWT will join us. It means a period of change and reconstituting as a new union, this will inevitably have repercussions on local divisions and the NTA will have to adapt accordingly to new rules and constitution.

Trepidation: Following the surprise results of the Brexit vote and the election of Trump both of which have led to an increase in racist incidents are of particular concern. Trump’s administration is all about division and blame with his tweet first and occasionally think later attitude. He seems bent on marginalising more people by his bullying attitude. It seems unlikely that the flow of refugees will cease resulting in many more drowning thanks to unscrupulous traffickers using unfit boats and fake life-vests. I cannot begin to comprehend how harrowing it is to see bodies washed up along otherwise beautiful coastlines or to understand the trauma experienced by the refugees who do survive.

The major concern for schools is the inexorable increase in academisation and the proposed funding cuts under the new formula. This will result in huge job losses initially for support staff who do such a vital job in helping to support some of our most vulnerable children. Class sizes will rise inevitably and workload increase even further. It all appears to be a cynical attempt to reduce the aspirations and life chances of poorer children and keep tertiary education for the rich. Even the proposed increase in apprenticeships is to be funded by those establishments with 250+ employees. Again, sound bites without government financial backing. I read last week that even school governors in West Sussex were “going on strike” and refusing to sanction budget cuts in their schools as a protest against F40.

We really need parents on our side in this fight against the government so the more they can be fully informed the better. I urge all members to go to www.schoolfundingcuts.org.uk to see the implication of the proposed cuts on their schools.

I appreciate that in the general scheme of things it is not always easy for members to attend union meetings but you can stay up to date by accessing our website. www.newhamteachers.org.uk

Peg Probett
NTA President 2017

International Brigade Commemoration

Picture: NTA members at the memorial to the British volunteers on the Jarama battlefield

Members of Newham NUT attended the commemoration of the British & Irish Battalion of the International Brigades on the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Jarama during the Spanish Civil War in 1937.  They joined a delegation of 120 trade unionists from Britain, including members from NUT, Unite, Unison, PCS, ASLEF and other unions who toured the battlefields of the University City and Jarama and visited a memorial to the trade union lawyers murdered at the end of Franco’s dictatorship.  The group attended a reception at the headquarters of the Workers’ Commissions, a Spanish trade union federation, where a message of solidarity from the NTA was read to the meeting.

NTA Letter of solidarity to Comisiones Obreras, Madrid
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Picture & Report by Andy Brown

NTA Newsletter

NEWSLETTER Vector Letters Icon. Blue.Government funding cuts are hitting schools
98.5% of schools face huge cuts that will harm education

Do your bit to support the NUT in the fight. We want everyone to:

  • e-mail their MP through www.schoolcuts.org.uk
  • organise a meeting for parents in your school
  • join a local lobby of your MP’s surgery
  • join local street stalls on Saturday 25th February
  • look out for more details

NTA Newsletter now published. Read more about the headlines above…plus news about:

  • Update: Primary Assessment
  • Update: Workload
  • Vote YES to a new union

Newham Teachers’ Association Newsletter
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Kevin Courtney on US entry ban

Dear colleagues,
As you will be aware many of our members have joined the protests around the country against Donald Trump’s executive order banning entry to the US from seven countries which have a majority Muslim population.
They will have joined those demonstrations as individuals but also, as teachers, they will be acutely concerned about the message this action sends to the young people they see every day.
I accepted an invitation to speak at the demonstration outside Downing Street on Monday and have accepted an invitation to speak at the demonstration in London on Saturday. I have also signed the petition and a letter to the Guardian calling for the invitation of a state visit to be withdrawn.
I believe that Donald Trump’s actions will upset many of the children and families our members serve and have an impact on communities all over the country. I therefore strongly believe that we must speak out – I do not believe that silence is an option.
When I spoke at Downing Street I said I was representing the biggest teachers union in Europe and wanted to explain why teachers should be involved. I said Trump was no ordinary bad politician – his policies aren’t bad immigration policies and misguided anti-terror policies.  Instead his policies are aimed at stoking fear and division. And it won’t just be migrants from some countries affected. That fear and division will come to every school and every community; so every person of good will needs to speak out. Every teacher needs to be involved – for the sake of our children.
I hope that you will support my decisions with regard to the protests and that you will support any protests that may be happening locally and encourage members to attend.
With best wishes,
Kevin Courtney
(NUT General Secretary)

Newham Teacher Association statement:
“I congratulate Kevin on his important initiative and am confident that the overwhelming majority of our members will support the statement of our General Secretary:
Peter Smith NTA Divisional Secretary”