Teacher's strike - small question...

(80 Posts)
MerryMarigold Mon 07-Oct-13 14:54:49

Don't want to get into ins and outs (I agree with it).

Just wondering why we have had letters home from both my kids' schools saying there will probably be a strike on the 17th, but they don't know which classes will be open or not. It sounds like some classes will be open and some closed depending on whether the teacher is striking or not. Do the head teachers not know what unions their teachers are affiliated to? Are the teachers involved just letting the schools know that week or when?

Just wanting to plan really and wondering why the schools don't appear to know what's happening.

Elibean Sat 12-Oct-13 09:17:12

We had our letters saying which classes are closed yesterday. Teachers have the right not to say till the morning of the strike, but in actual fact all of our teachers decided to let us have advance notice, which I appreciate.

Teachers, as I understand it, do not have to tell the Head which union they belong to. Some knew in advance they would or would not strike, others are struggling with the decision - which, to be fair, is probably a sign of their integrity: it's not a decision to be taken lightly, and many of these undecided-till-now ones are young.

dd1 is going to school. Her teacher belongs to a different union. dd2 is off, her class is closed. No problem.

clam Sat 12-Oct-13 08:37:57

Well, retro they shouldn't be bein told they can have the day off if they wish. If a teacher (and I'm talking primary here) is in school working as normal, then so should her class be.

MerryMarigold Sat 12-Oct-13 08:20:39

I will let you know if Ds1 gets DVDs. Knowing his teacher, I very much doubt it! Agree with summer but they are all tired and various other stuff is happening.

Retro, I think what's happened is that the teacher was put on the spot and didn't really know what to day to the kids. I would ask the school if they have an official policy on siblings. let is know

Retropear Fri 11-Oct-13 22:53:49

On a normal working day you wouldn't expect kids to be told they could have the day off if they wished.The last few weeks of summer term see DVDs so not a big presumption to make that a day with just a few skeleton staff and a handful of kids would involve the odd DVD.hmm

clam Fri 11-Oct-13 22:46:03

I was at work the week before last when the rest of the school was striking. I had only 20 of my class in. The missing ten were marked down as unauthorised absence by the office, I believe. We had a morning of 'proper' work - no DVDs in sight. Why would we? It was a normal working day, as far as I was concerned.

Retropear Fri 11-Oct-13 22:19:44

Oh I am in charge however if there is inconsistency at school and other kids are given carte Blanche by school to have the day of too then to be perfectly frank I don't see the point particularly when it will probably end up being a DVD day.

Feenie Fri 11-Oct-13 21:42:51

I think you know the answer to that, Clam wink

clam Fri 11-Oct-13 21:30:14

I don't see the relevance of what a sibling may or may not be doing. If one child's teacher is working that day, you send him to school. If you are told that your other child's teacher is striking and they cannot go, then you need to make alternative arrangements.

Do you keep both/all DCs off if just one of them is ill, in case they "moan" that 'it's not fayer?' And if, in the case of a strike, they moan, surely you briskly tell them that that that's life and no one ever said it was fair and to get on with it.

Jeez, who's in charge in your households?

Feenie Fri 11-Oct-13 21:23:38

My issue stems from the utter vagueness from the NUT as to official reasons

Their reasons are the same as the NASUWT - it's a joint campaign.

mrz Fri 11-Oct-13 19:41:46

I think there is an "age" factor too juniper

juniper9 Fri 11-Oct-13 18:54:05

I also find there's a north/ south divide in attitudes towards striking. The more militant members of staff in my school are the northerners. Don't know if it's because we all have experience or familial experience of the strikes in the 80s, so it hits us harder.

MerryMarigold Fri 11-Oct-13 15:03:11

Retro, I am the OP! I was joking about ds1's teacher's integrity and being a Gove lover. I would have to ask first why she isn't striking. I would prefer it to be that she needs the money rather than that she disagrees with the strike. But hey ho. We are all entitled to our opinions.

However, I think it's a shame that everyone is so passive these days. Seems like most of the NUT teachers are the older guard. Ds1's teacher (not striking) is young. I do think young people (in the majority) have forgotten how to fight for a cause and generally fairly passive. When no-one is listening, it seems like the only way is to strike. I think this will be the first of many unless some dialogue starts - which is a shame.

Pooka Fri 11-Oct-13 14:30:26

We're shut.

A consideration in any decision is school safety. Even if some class teachers are able to work, if senior management (I.e. deputy and assistant heads) are depleted there comes a tipping point where the school has to close. I think 3/4 of the senior leadership team are striking.

juniper9 Fri 11-Oct-13 14:20:41

From what I've heard, ATL ran out of money so can't afford the legal fees involved of calling a strike. That was gossip from NASUWT, so can't guarantee it's true!

I'm not a fan of strike action- I prefer more passive ways of solving problems (like Amnesty's 'write a disapproving letter' system) but I will support my union as otherwise it makes a mockery of the system.

I originally joined NASUWT as I knew NUT were prone to striking, and my mum was in ATL and found them useless. Also, NASUWT gave me pretty diaries smile easily swayed

I found it quite annoying when a few members of staff in my school chose to ignore the strike and go in anyway, then were telling others how great it was that they had the day to sort their classrooms and get displays up etc. I don't know what's happening in my school this time as I'm on maternity leave and so out of the loop. I'm considering taking my baby to the rally but she will only be 15 days old! Too young to be an activist?!

londonmum14 Fri 11-Oct-13 14:20:31

I apologise if this has been asked upthread but has anyone heard if their school/class is closed yet? We had the letter telling us of the possibility but have then heard nothing since.

chicaguapa Fri 11-Oct-13 14:18:45

Then that's another lesson for the unions. When asked why they didn't strike, the teachers should say that they didn't have enough clear information from the unions as to the reasons for striking. I do think union support has been lower this time around and I hope they try to explore why this is.

Retropear Fri 11-Oct-13 14:15:06

My issue stems from the utter vagueness from the NUT as to official reasons and in the loooooong list of reasons from the NAS I disagree with at least 8.

Anyhoo still none the wiser.

Feel sorry for the op's teacher she now doubts the integrity of simply for having her own opinions.Fully respect my dd's.

chicaguapa Fri 11-Oct-13 14:07:06

I might be wrong, but isn't ATL the union that rarely strikes but isn't this time? I'm sure they've only stiked once in their history. I know the NUT is the more militant and the NASUWT less so. They're the two that are striking next week.

My indecision re the strikes stems from not just wanting the government to register that the teachers are unhappy with the reforms but wanting to make the unions realise that teachers want to be better represented and not be called to strike. I think the government and unions bear joint responsibility for the image that teachers are trying to shake off and the unions need to realise that too.

Retropear Fri 11-Oct-13 13:55:10

Sorry having been a teacher and paid my union membership it still tells me buggar all and certainly doesn't make me agree with the strike.

MerryMarigold Fri 11-Oct-13 13:53:19

Ah, sorry. The union that rarely strikes is striking.

If that doesn't tell you anything, you need to use your brain a bit more.

MerryMarigold Fri 11-Oct-13 13:51:58

What doesn't tell you anything?

The point of sending your child in is what you're teaching them. Other parents can teach what their kids what they want. Instilling in kids that school is important is more up to parents than teachers. Teachers have other jobs to do. I think the teacher probably thought she can't come down heavily on those kids choosing not to come in, and fair enough. She is leaving it to the parents' discretion.

The fines are there for people who take the mick (and there are plenty of them), like a kid I know who never comes in on Monday because his parents are too hungover.

Retropear Fri 11-Oct-13 13:46:16

As I said fully intended to send my child but if others are allowed off just because siblings aren't what is the point?The lack of consistency is the issue.

Also the school is running on skeleton staff I'm pretty sure the day would be better spent out in the fresh air.

Retropear Fri 11-Oct-13 13:43:26

It doesn't tell me anything.hmm

minihahawithafringe Fri 11-Oct-13 13:25:54

Our whole school is closed

MerryMarigold Fri 11-Oct-13 13:25:38

And yes, 1 of my 3 will be going to school, much as he doesn't want to. End. Of.

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