Minutes of the General Meeting held on 4th December 2007

Apologies : Steve Boddy, Miriam Murch, Kulwant Singh, Philomena Lorriman, Jo Hill, Elvira Seuss, Anwar Sheikh.

Minutes : Agreed are a true record.

Matters arising :

Academies – active proposals are Rhodesway and Wyke.

+ Trust proposals Nab Wood, Challenge and Laisterdyke. Worry about Academy sponsor Marmaduke Pickthall is causing some of this interest in trust status. Their proposal is on the internet – curriculum includes archery and riding. Sponsor seems to have a Turkish background. No appetite from the Council to take them on as a sponsor.

Only Challenge has a formal consultation for Trust out. Rhodesway proposed Academy with Dixons as sponsor.– 85/90 staff had signed a petition against, which the IEB (governing body) would be considering in the next week.

Wyke (& Rhodesway) not in BSF programme, Authority relying on Academy programme to rebuild them. Government will not put money into rebuilding of Wyke because of the site.

Agreed that Trust documents be sent again to School Reps.


Reports and Discussions:

Guest speaker Howard Miles NEC member of UCU (University and Colleges Union) – Bradford College.

UCU had an offer of 2% in August and 1% in February (2.55% over the year) i.e. 1.5% pay cut.

In October pay conference rejected this offer.

There will be a ballot in January for action.

Keen to link pay issue to the attacks on FE. FE lecturers on average earn 6% less than teachers.

Ian Murch– Public Sector Liaison Group of TUC meeting this afternoon, Steve Sinnott (GS) and Christine Blower (DGS) are there,

UNISON didn’t strike this year but have said they will act next year.

Members are saying workload is as big an issue as pay at our meetings. In our indicative ballot on pay action, vast majority were in favour of action.

Decided to try to hold a public sector pay rally. Depends on contacts with other unions.

ISP (Intensive Support Programme)

Report from schools that had 3 or 4 2hour visits last year – to tell them what staff had to do. Literacy and Numeracy – 3 targets must, should, could achieve – for each year group. This year light touch. Head now saying what school wants.

Imposition of someone else’s agenda.
Effects on staff: last year 9 adults in tears – 3 early retirements, 1 – p/t.

Classroom Observations

Agreed to send out Union guidelines

Needed fuller discussion at future meetings

Defend Karen Reissmann

Chair of Manchester Mental Health branch of UNISON. Sacked (1) for criticising transfer of services to private sector (2) for not keeping sacking confidential. Branch sent letter of support. Donation of £500 agreed.


Annual donation to TSN (Teacher Support Network). Agreed to increase from £500 to £750.

Nomination to CBC (Conference Business Committee)

Rinaldo Frezzato ( Waltham Forest) agreed.

Local elections

Jo Hill (President), Alison Hill (Vice President) Other Officers were re-elected unopposed. The correct number of Conference Delegates were nominated and therefore there was no need for an election.

- Unite against Fascism meeting - 10am at Swathmore Centre in Leeds this Saturday.