University Strikes

(191 Posts)
ILikeTrains Mon 03-Feb-20 20:10:16

I feel like I should be posting this on the AIBU thread but I'm bloody furious that there's going to be another round of strikes. This will be getting on for a months worth of education that these students are missing out on, this could affect their outcomes over all.

I'm sure the unions have very valid concerns for their members but who is the strike really harming? These students only get one go at this - the staff have their degrees already (and probably not at the same expense that these students have).

I'm so angry that the people most affected by this are the students and the have no control at all over this situation.

OP’s posts: |
boys3 Mon 03-Feb-20 20:15:45

it's not great, and escalating disruption over 4 wks this time

HeronLanyon Mon 03-Feb-20 20:15:45

Many students are in full support of their lecturers who haven’t had inflation linked pay rise for many many years and whose pensions are being eroded on incorrect figures whilst universities sit on huge surpluses. I have family members who are about to strike again and lose yet more wages. I also know students who are caught up in it. Academia has been underfunded and under appreciated for decades.

burnoutbabe Mon 03-Feb-20 20:20:33

I am a student and thinking about it, we just get taught less and examined on less. Which is a bit of a relief when you are in the thick of it and it's all piling up.
So whilst I was annoyed about strikes when first heard about it, now I mind less (even though I am paying same amount of cash)

gaffamate Mon 03-Feb-20 20:22:41

Everything @HeronLanyon said.

dahliaaa Mon 03-Feb-20 20:24:09

One of my sons is in his final year and getting quite anxious about it. His friends are the same. I think it's really tough for them in the final year.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Mon 03-Feb-20 20:27:53

I think it’s rough for final year students as well. Luckily I don’t think ds uni on the list. I’d worry if it was.


poseysbobblehat Mon 03-Feb-20 20:31:01

Ds said last time they didn't even know who was striking. They only knew if they turned up to lectures which had been cancelled

BackforGood Mon 03-Feb-20 20:44:33

You do realise that people don't strike 'just for a laugh', or 'just to annoy parents of students' (in this case) ? hmm

People end up withdrawing their labour (and therefore losing money themselves) as a last resort after they haven't been able to get their employers to move on whatever stance it is they are protesting about.
Of course any strike is annoying when it affects us, but that is the actual poit of it - to raise awareness and inconvenience the employer.

PickUpThePieces Mon 03-Feb-20 20:55:06

I’m also furious about the strikes.

The contact hours of many courses are minimal to say the least and now students are missing out on what contact time there is.

There is an epidemic of mental health issues sweeping through our young people.
Too much time alone, not enough contact time and social isolation is making the university experience a fairly miserable one for many.
A glance through the higher education threads, will tell you this.
Anyone working in higher education must know this to be the case, anyway.
Not to mention the student debt.

As for support from students for their striking lecturers, it is extremely difficult for students to be anything other than supportive, thanks to the vocal picket lines on campus.

My DS had a lecturer from overseas who wasn’t striking but was told not to try to get to his seminar as he would have to cross the picket line.
Feeling threatened or at the very least uncomfortable, is apparently acceptable under these circumstances.

We can afford to support our DC through university but honestly, unless you are very sure about your degree choice, have significant contact hours or are on a vocational course, I would really think long and hard about what universities are actually delivering.

Social workers, nurses, medics and teachers rarely, if ever, strike.
I may have some sympathy with university staff, but find another way to register your unhappiness and don’t take it out on the student body.

Sophiesdog2020 Mon 03-Feb-20 21:02:18

Same for my DS, poseysbobblehat, they have no idea until they get to the lecture usually.

burnoutbabe - obviously every uni/course is different but my DS gets examined on everything, they just have to learn (and hopefully understand) any strike lectures in their own time. He has finals mid-May, so these next strikes could be crucial to his overall grade and at the very least, will add extra work over Easter when he has enough to do. He wasn’t impressed when I messaged him about the strikes earlier.

HeronLanyon - not an ounce of sympathy from either myself or DS for the strikers, nor from many other students and parents if you read other HE threads.

Like Op says, they are affecting the current generation’s education, when they got their degrees probably without fees and any hassle.

ErrolTheDragon Mon 03-Feb-20 21:39:04

* we just get taught less and examined on less.*
Fine for some subjects I suppose...

Partially educated doctors etc? I hope not...

So far, this year and in the strikes a couple of years ago, DDs lecturers have all showed up.

HeronLanyon Mon 03-Feb-20 21:50:37

sophiesdog understood. Wasn’t suggesting all were in support. I just thought it important to say there are differing views about the strikes amongst staff students and parents etc.

Xmasbaby11 Mon 03-Feb-20 21:56:08

I teach at a uni in English language teaching dept. The strikes are too much this time and I can't take part in all of it. I teach international students who study all day every day, so the loss of teaching is hugely detrimental to them.

dahliaaa Mon 03-Feb-20 21:57:10

we just get taught less and examined on less.

Not the case for DS unfortunately. They are examined on everything - whether there have been lectures/ seminars / supervision or not :-(

Bezalelle Mon 03-Feb-20 23:07:30

Teach your DC to show solidarity for the striking lecturers and staff. One day it might be them needing union support in their future industry.

PickUpThePieces Mon 03-Feb-20 23:22:09

My DC can make up their own mind, thanks.

As they’ve grown up with a mother who has worked with children and young people her entire career, I’m confident that they’ve seen that no matter how demanding, difficult and stressful the job is, the answer is not to take out professional grievances on the people that are the most important in the equation.

AgileLass Mon 03-Feb-20 23:25:39

What do you think academics should do instead, PickUpThePieces? Genuine question. How do we make our case to employers without withdrawing our labour, when they won’t listen or negotiate?

dahliaaa Mon 03-Feb-20 23:26:03

My DS is sympathetic to the lecturers - that doesn't stop him being really worried that all his hard work is going to be scuppered as he heads towards his finals.

To be honest I find the comments showing a complete lack of understanding as to why students might be upset very strange.

PickUpThePieces Mon 03-Feb-20 23:29:19

Isn’t that what your unions are for?

I’m not without sympathy for your situation, but I cannot support the impact the strike action has on students and their futures.

AgileLass Mon 03-Feb-20 23:29:31

I do feel sorry for students. Especially as they’ve faced multiple disruptions over the last few years. The blame for that rests at the doors of the university management, who’ve overseen an explosion in workload, casualisation, gender and pay gaps, are still trying to dismantle our pensions, and are spending millions on campus white elephants and shiny buildings instead of in front-line student facing services esp investment in staffing. All the while giving themselves enormous salary increases.

AgileLass Mon 03-Feb-20 23:31:08

Isn’t that what your unions are for?

confused yes, the union has called a strike. Industrial action 101.

awesmum Mon 03-Feb-20 23:36:57

I feel sorry for the students- still having to pay for lectures that their lecturers aren't going to be teaching them.

The people who are being punished are the student and the lecturers. The powers that be aren't losing out so why bother doing anything?

Purplepooch Tue 04-Feb-20 06:43:51

I know my Ds will support his lecturer s on this one. He sees the bigger picture than only thinking about his own needs.
He didn't cross the picket line last time and I don't think he will this time. He is an adult and makes his own choices but I am proud of him for the empathy he shows to the staff who feel they need to withdraw their labour to be heard.

HasaDigaEebowai Tue 04-Feb-20 06:47:31

Its shocking and selfish behaviour. But UCU in particular will carry on regardless because they are on a power trip.

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