how to choose which Teaching union

(17 Posts)
dylsmum1998 Fri 01-Oct-10 21:50:10

I am doing my PGCE primary at the moment, I have been advised to join a teaching union before I start going on placements in a fortnight. How do I choose between them all? What should I look for?


LucindaCarlisle Fri 01-Oct-10 22:16:54

Have you signed up as a member of the TES web Forum yet?

Go to

SandStorm Fri 01-Oct-10 22:18:48

If I were you I would join as many as you can - I believe many, if not all, of them give free membership for students. Then, once you're through your student days you can make a decision which one you want to stick with.

c0rns1lk Fri 01-Oct-10 22:19:10

I'm with ATL and they don't want to know if you want help with something. Now I'm wondering why I haven't changed <slaps self>

EvilTwins Fri 01-Oct-10 22:20:13

I agree with sandstorm - join them all, and then take your time to decide which you want to stick with.

LucindaCarlisle Fri 01-Oct-10 22:20:40

I do not think that you should be allowed to join more than one Union. That may cause probs for you subsequently.

EvilTwins Fri 01-Oct-10 22:25:02

Why so Lucinda?

LucindaCarlisle Fri 01-Oct-10 22:27:15

I believe that there is a union rule which prohibits union members being in more than one union.

maize Fri 01-Oct-10 22:28:53

I am also doing a primary PGCE at the moment

I have joined the three biggies - NUT, NASUWT and ATL. They came to the uni and teamed up and told us to join all three because it is free and then decide on just one when you qualify and have to pay.

Plan to join NUT at the end of the course because I have heard it is the best for primary teachers.

maize Fri 01-Oct-10 22:29:32

Oh I am also in another union for another job and I checked with them about the teaching ones and they said it was fine.

LucindaCarlisle Fri 01-Oct-10 22:30:22

That is very BAD advice.

EvilTwins Fri 01-Oct-10 22:30:27

I don't think it counts for students though, does it? I "joined" them all when I did my PGCE then stuck with the NASUWT - rubbish reasons though - my parents were both teaching at the time, and they were with the NASUWT. Dad later went on to sit on its National Exec, which meant I got quick answers to any questions that arose...

Am still loyal to the NASUWT now, OP. TBH, my best advice would be to wait til you get a job and then join whichever has the biggest presence at your school.

dylsmum1998 Sat 02-Oct-10 10:33:06

thanks for all the replies, its very confusing to decide, maybe I'll do as some of you have and join a few, then leave the decision for when I qualify

ninja Sat 02-Oct-10 10:36:02

I think it's good advice to go with one that has a good presence and leader where you end up working

charmander Sat 02-Oct-10 10:40:56

Go with whichever one suits you best. Maybe when you get a job find out which is the most popular union in your new school.

I was ATL because they gave us the option of not striking if we didn't agree with it. (I do agree with striking btw, just personally am very loathe to do it for pay).

shieldbug Sat 02-Oct-10 10:47:22

I was with ATL for the same reasons as charmander and found them extremely good when I needed their help. I was secondary level though so don't know if they are any good for primary teachers.

manyhands Sun 03-Oct-10 20:59:32

I wanted to join ATL as you can opt out of strikes you don't agree with. But they had a campaign against faith school and I teach in one and my kids go to so opted for the NUT.

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