The April issue of The Manchester Teacher can be found here
Manchester Trades Council’s May Day festival is this weekend, and has a huge number of great events.
Assemble 11am at All Saints Park for our traditional May Day march, this year concentrating on defending the NHS.
Manchester NUT will be running a Reclaiming Schools stall at the Manchester Mechanics Institute during the afternoon, and also hosting a More Than A Score open meeting at 2.45pm – come and hear the genuine alternative to the current disastrous primary school testing regime.
International Workers’ Memorial Day remembers all workers who have lost their lives in the workplace, and is commemorated this Friday in Manchester.
Programme for Manchester #iwmd17
Gather at Lincoln Square, Brazennose Street from 11.30 onwards with banners and wreaths.
Music from Claire Mooney
12.00: Lynn Collins, Secretary of NWTUC, Chair will welcome everyone, briefly explain the reasons for IWMD and the theme for this year
12.05: Andy Burnham, Labour Party Candidate for G.M. Mayor – how he will work to ensure good health and safety at heart of decent jobs and lives, is a key part of his economic strategy
12.10: Tracey Seward, Families Against Corporate Killers –Tracey’s husband Mark was killed by his employers negligence
12.16: Leo McCann, Professor of Organisational Studies, University of Manchester, the effect of cuts, extra work and trauma on the health of firefighters and other emergency workers
12.22: Christine Alderson, Greater Manchester Asbestos Victims Support Group Phil Liptrot – how government attacks on access to justice: are affecting sick and injured workers and their families
12.26: Mick Whelan, Gen Sec ASLEF on how health and safety for workers is also for passengers, DOO campaign etc
12.30: Lauren McCourt, BFAWU, Fast food worker
12.35: Neil Hope Collins, Prospect
12.40: Ann Farrow and Jane Warburton, UNISON Care Workers
12.45: Phil Liptrot, Thompsons Solicitors government attacks on access to justice effects on sick, injured workers & families
- 49: Reading of the names of some of those killed in the North West
12.53: One minutes silence to Remember all the Dead killed at and by work
12.55: Laying of wreaths
12.57: Song from Claire Mooney
13.00: Lynn Collins – concluding comments.
Adjourn to the People’s History Museum – stewards will point the way- to see the “Fair enough: We are all sickened by inequality at work” exhibition, the new GMHC film on why IWMD is important to us and have a cup of tea. And warm up/cool down/ dry off- whatever is appropriate!
NUT and ATL members have voted overwhelmingly in favour of the amalgamation of our two unions. Our new union will be called the National Education Union (NEU).
The National Education Union will come into existence on 1 September 2017 with over 450,000 members, a powerful voice for the whole education profession, in state-funded and independent schools and colleges. For full details see the press release.
Unity is Strength
It’s no secret that professional unity has been a hot topic at the National Union of Teachers for many years. A union is only as strong as its membership and incorporating the majority of teachers into one union would result in a louder, more persuasive voice when championing the rights of school staff and students. Bringing together the National Union of Teachers with the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) to create a new union is a natural progression in the quest to provide the most effective and efficient means of representing all education professionals.
We sat down with Kevin Courtney, NUT General Secretary and Dr Mary Bousted, ATL General Secretary, to find out more about the amalgamation of these two unions and what it will mean for members. Both were keen to share their thoughts on why the time is now to join forces and how teachers everywhere will benefit from a strong unified profession
The next NW H&S Adviser Group Meeting & Training will take place on 24 March at The Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Peace Centre, Peace Drive, Off Cromwell Avenue, Great Sankey, Warrington, WA5 1HQ and is open to all reps, Division Secretaries and members across the region. Divisions are also encouraged to send a delegate to the advisers meeting.
The schedule for the day is as follows:
North West H&S Adviser Group Meeting/Training
Arrival from 12:30pm – Buffet lunch & refreshments
Group Meeting/training – 1:00pm – 3:00pm
Valuing Women- Health and Safety issues for Women Teachers
Arrival from 3.30pm – Hot/cold food & refreshments
4:00pm – Main Speaker – Janet Newsham (TUC Hazards)
5.30pm – Finish
Places can be booked via the Eventbrite link below.
Commenting on the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s speech, Kevin Courtney, General Secretary of the NUT, the largest teachers’ union, said:
“This budget is a complete dereliction of duty to our children and young people. The Chancellor knows full well that schools and sixth form colleges up and down the country are on their knees struggling to make ends meet. School budgets have been cut to the bone, class sizes have increased, subjects have been dropped from the curriculum, materials and resources are scarce yet nothing has been done to address this very serious problem. All this comes at a time of soaring pupil numbers and a developing crisis in teacher recruitment and retention.
“Despite the Conservative Party manifesto pledging a real-terms increase in the schools’ budget during this Parliament, the reality is far from the case. 98% of schools will see a real terms loss in funding per pupil between now and 2020. This takes into account the Government’s proposed ‘fair funding’ formula. In the Prime Minister’s constituency of Maidenhead, for instance, schools are set to lose an average of real terms loss of £377 per pupil, while the schools in Philip Hammond’s constituency of Runnymede and Weybridge will lose an average of £285 per pupil during the same period.
“Instead of tackling this crisis of their own making, we now learn that extra funding will pour into the opening of new free schools and grammar schools for which there is absolutely no need. Parents and teachers will be deeply dismayed at this flagrant and irresponsible waste of money. These are simply the wrong priorities.
“Any improvement to the current state of technical and vocational is welcome, but teachers will be concerned that introducing ‘T-Levels’ will increase the separation of academic and vocational pathways. As with its policy on grammar schools, the Government is fixated on creating educational divides – to the detriment of young people. The NUT supports a reformed, unified system of 14-19 curriculum and qualifications which helps bring an end to the notion that academic and technical learning pathways are an ‘either/or’ option.
“The money proposed for investment in school refurbishment will be welcome providing it is actually new money and will be spent on ensuring that school buildings are fit for purpose and safe from the dangers of asbestos. Nevertheless, with the National Audit Office having recently reported that it would cost some £6.7 billion to repair all school buildings to a satisfactory standard, we require much more substantial investment from the Government.
“The Government must focus on the funding crisis in our schools and colleges. The Chancellor had an opportunity to rectify this in his Budget but chose not to. This is an outrageous situation. Parents, teachers and MPs, many within the Conservative Party, will not stand by and allow this to happen.”
Manchester City Council, local trade unions and community groups are coming together in Manchester on Saturday 25 February to highlight the devastating effects of cut backs to health, social care, and education, to the local community.
A torch-lit march will leave Castlefield Arena at 5pm, and after arriving at Albert Square, will hear calls for these basic services to be properly funded from a number of local and national figures, including Angela Rayner MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Education, and Kevin Courtney, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers. Other speakers will be confirmed.
Kevin Courtney, General Secretary, NUT, said: “The Government is keen at every turn to define its new funding formula for schools as ‘fair funding’, but this is nonsense. It cannot be fair without new money. There is a gaping hole in the school budget and it is only set to increase through inflation and a rise in pupil numbers. The Government’s planned formula ensures that 98.5% of schools will see their funding per pupil fall in real terms. Every demographic of school is hit – rural schools, inner city schools, grammars, secondary moderns, academies, and faith schools. All will lose funding. There are no winners from the Government’s education policy, only losers and worse losers.”
John Morgan, Secretary of Manchester NUT, added “Here in Manchester we are already starting to see the effects, with large cuts planned to the Sensory Support Service, and a number of schools announcing re-organisations and planned redundancies just since January. This situation is guaranteed to worsen.”
Tory cuts to social care and education budgets have gone too far. There simply isn’t enough money to care for vulnerable people and help our young people thrive in our city.
Older people, those needing support for mental health, disabilities and learning difficulties, and those affected by homelessness, alcohol and drugs, are being hit by drastic funding cuts driven through by Theresa May’s heartless government.
Join us to protest about cuts in social care funding and the Tory attack on our schools.
Meet at Castlefield Arena, Saturday 25th February, 5pm for a torchlight march to the rally in Albert Square.
Bring your family and friends to stand up for Manchester.
Come out with us on Saturday 25th February. Stand up for your city and send a strong message to Theresa May