Teachers to consider strike threat
Teachers in Scotland will discuss the possibility of industrial action over pay, workload and budget cuts over the next couple of days, as several motions on the subject are put before the annual general meeting of the EIS – Scotland’s biggest teachers’ trade union.
This year’s event in Perth will see a greater proportion of motions on pay and conditions than recent years. A number of highlight the increased workload associated with new SQA qualifications, including a call for a boycott of unit assessments unless workload concerns are addressed.
A recent survey on workload by the union revealed an average working week of 46.5 hours – 11 hours more than their contract.
EIS general secretary Larry Flanagan said: “Teachers are always extremely reluctant to take industrial action, so it is significant that there are a number of Motions calling for some form of industrial action over workload to be debated at the AGM this year, including calls or a boycott of some of the internal assessments currently demanded by the SQA.
"The message to the Scottish Government, to local authorities and national education bodies could not be clearer – you must take action, now, to lighten the load on our schools and our teachers.”
A Scottish Government spokesman said: "We are committed to making sure councils have the right number and highest quality of teachers in our schools which is why we have offered councils £51m including an additional £10m over and above last year's settlements to support teacher numbers"