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National Union of Teachers
Derbyshire Association
Strike
Derbyshire School Reps Training
Wednesday 2nd July 2014
 
This is an opportunity to keep up-to-date with school - based issues that are affecting members in Derbyshire
 
Venue
Gothic Wharf, Cromford Mill,
Mill Road, Cromford, Matlock DE4 3RQ
9.30am – 2.30pm
Tea, coffee and excellent buffet lunch all provided
 
ALL REPS HAVE A RIGHT TO ATTEND THIS TRAINING SESSION.   IF THERE IS A PROBLEM, LET US KNOW.
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Please contact the office to reserve a place.
 
Lobby of Parliament
10 June 2014
 
With little over three weeks remaining until the lobby, we are still looking for representatives from every parliamentary constituency in our area.  We are looking for teachers, (including supply and retired),  parents, governors and  sixth form college representatives.
 
Further details may be found here.
 
Anyone interested should contact the office.  Contact details are here.
 
Linkies
Some useful links
 
The following links might be useful to members of the NUT in Derbyshire.
 
New teacher courses
Teaching and Learning Courses
The Teacher online
 
We want to talk but will the Secretary of State listen?
Below is a list of the local MPs
 
Amber Valley – Nigel Mills, Conservative nigel.mills.mp@parliament.uk
Bolsover – Dennis Skinner, Labour skinnerd@parliament.uk
Chesterfield – Toby Perkins, Labour  toby.perkins.mp@parliament.uk
Derby North – Chris Williamson, Labour chris.williamson.mp@parliament.uk
Derby South – Margaret Beckett, Labour beckettm@parliament.uk
Derbyshire Dales – Patrick McLoughlin ,Conservative patrick.mcloughlin.mp@parliament.uk 
Erewash – Jessica Lees, Conservative jessica.lee.mp@parliament.uk
High Peak – Andrew Bingham, Conservative andrew.bingham.mp@parliament.uk
Mid Derbyshire – Pauline Latham, Conservative pauline.latham.mp@parliament.uk
North East Derbyshire – Natascha Engel, Labour natascha.engel.mp@parliament.uk
South Derbyshire – Heather Wheeler, Conservative heather.wheeler.mp@parliament.uk
 
Many of these MPs also using Twitter so it is worth emailing, writing or tweeting them
 
Rallies
Details of Rallies on March 26th
 
On the day of the strike there will be rallies in Sheffield, Nottingham and Derby.  
See below for details
 
Notts & City
March and Rally
Starting at the Forest Recreation Ground at 10.00 am, arriving in Market Square 11.00 am for a short rally.
 
Sheffield
March and Rally
Assembling Devonshire Green 11.30 am, arriving Barker's Pool 12.15 for a short rally.
 
Derby
March and Rally
Meet at 9.15 am at Bemrose School, Uttoxeter New Road, DE22 3HU, march to Derby Market Place for leafleting at 9.45 and rally at 10.00 am.
 
Strike
The NUT announces a national day of strike action on the 26th of March.
 
Earlier in 2013 the NUT suspended it's program of strike action on the understanding that the government would enter into discussions on a wide range of issues.
 
The NUT and NASUWT met with government officials in October and were given assurances that Michael Gove would enter into these discussions. Now, over 17 weeks later, no meaningful discussions have taken place.
 
No-one wants to strike but we have reached the point where we have no alternative.  Of course we can call off the strike at any time, but to quote Christine Blower
 
"For this to happen, the Secretary of State needs to give reassurances that he will not go ahead with any changes which worsen teachers’ working conditions. He can step away from the proposals he put to the School Teachers’ Review Body. Further, he needs to commit to serious and substantive talks on the other elements of the dispute, including on pay and pensions."
 
If this is not the case then we will strike on the 24th of March.
 
Further details are still to be announced including whether the NAS/UWT are to join us (they are to make an announcement next week).
 
Watch this space
 
Wack-a-Gove and the Blobs
Michael Gove has been in the news all week.
 
On a recent edition of the PM program described Michael Gove as a whack-a-mole (listen here).  No matter how many time you hit him with a mallet he still pops up.
 
Here are some of the wacky ideas he's proposed in the last couple of weeks
 
Teachers Assurance
Savings, investment and insurance for busy teachers
Recommended by the NUT

 

Teachers Assurance offers a range of savings, investments and insurance products for teachers and their families.
 
“Over the years, thousands of NUT members and their families have enjoyed the benefits of saving with this well-respected organisation.
“It’s one of the biggest friendly societies in the UK. What’s more, it continues its proud tradition of delivering attractive insurance, savings and investment benefits for NUT members.
“I have no hesitation in recommending Teachers Assurance. If you’re looking for the ideal savings and investment product, the information they offer is well worth looking at.”
Christine Blower, General Secretary
 
Teachers Assurance is a mutual friendly society, which means it has no shareholders. The company is owned by, and works for, its members (the people who save and invest in their products). Any profits are shared between members or reinvested to provide services to the teaching profession including:
 
•School and union talks – to increase teachers’ understanding of money matters like pensions, sick pay, death benefits, savings and investment
•Online calculators – quick and easy tools to help teachers decide whether to top up their pension, sickness, life cover or savings
•Customer support line – open seven days a week and until 9pm on a weekday to answer your money related questions
 
To find our more, go to www.teachersassurance.co.uk/moneytalks or call them on 0800 056 0563
 
 
We're Talking - Or Are We?
 
You may have seen in the press there has been an exchange of letters between Gove and our unions.  Gove has offered talks but they have only been on the mechanisms by which our children's education system will be changed, not whether these changes are good for teachers, students or the education system.
 
He also wants to include the ATL union, NAHT, ASCL, Voice and Edapt (a legal group that offers insurance against claims being made against teachers - at a cost).  None of these organisations are involved in our dispute.
 
Gove then said he was "saddened" by the unions approach.  The NUT and NAS/UWT then issued a joint statement saying that Gove was "game playing" and "deliberately seeking to misrepresent" our position.
 
On Monday a joint statement from Ms Blower and Christine Keates, leader of the NASUWT, reaffirmed that plans were in place for a national strike in England and Wales "no later than 13 February 2014 in the event of insufficient progress through negotiation."
 
A thorough report of the issues can be found here

 

Challenging Homophobia

Free Primary Resources

 

In September 2013 Ofsted released new briefing for section 5 inspection called ‘Exploring the school’s actions to prevent and tackle homophobic and transphobic bullying’
 
CHIPS
 
Challenging Homophobia in Primary Schools by Elly Barnes offers materials that challenge stereotypes and provide an opportunity to discuss LGBT issues.
 
The books and imagery highlight and celebrate the diversity of family life.
 
‘Breaking the Mould’
 
Challenging Gender Stereotypes Through Primary Education is a collection of materials used by the five primary schools involved in a two-year NUT project - including lesson plans, worksheets, children’s drawings and a list of the project books – all available here!
 
More details available of the OFSTED report and these resources are available here
 
We're Talking
 
The NUT/NASUWT strikes have always been about talking.
 
All the other issues have been secondary.  Pensions, pay, the curriculum, academies, free schools, workload, GCSE English fiasco (remember that?) , working conditions, term times, non-qualified teachers and the creeping privatisation of education are all what we're worked up about, but at the end of the day what's proving the single point of failure on these issues is that the Government won't talk to us about them.
 
There have been talks, but they have only been on the mechanism by which these so called "reforms" will take place. There is no discussion on what reforms (if any) should take place, there is no consideration of whether these "reforms" are good for teachers, good for students or good for education in this country as a whole.  There is no consultation with the people at the chalkface
 
But after a successful series of strikes, Gove has said he is willing to enter into discussions. This is a u-turn of the highest order and should be shouted from the rooftops
 
Of course, these may not be the meaningful discussions we are hoping for, but it would be wrong to write them off before they have taken place.  If they are not what we need them to be then we will strike again in the new year.  He has to listen.
 
Full details are available from the union website at teachers.org