NUT and NASUWT Industrial Action - Advice for UNISON Members in Schools

You may be aware that colleagues from NUT & NASUWT are taking strike action in Staffordshire on 1st October, as a result of this action UNISON National Office have provided the following advice for members during this time.

UNISON respects the rights of other trade unions to take industrial action.  UNISON members in schools have not been balloted for strike action or action short of strike action and therefore they are advised to continue with their normal duties and responsibilities.  However, UNISON members should not take on any additional responsibilities being given to them directly as a result of the teachers’ industrial action.

School support staff should not be expected to provide cover for or take classes where this would normally be done by teachers who are taking action.  In particular Higher Level Teaching Assistants or cover supervisors should only be taking classes or providing cover where they are contracted to do so, it is timetabled or part of their normal duties.  Staff should not be moved from the duties they would normally have carried out in order to cover classes and frustrate the industrial action of colleagues.

Members who are under pressure to cover should contact their UNISON rep, Branch or Region for further advice.

Members are reminded that due to industrial relations legislation only those employees who have been involved in a legal ballot are allowed to take industrial action.

In addition to the national advice Staffordshire UNISON would also like to advise members that should the school leadership decide to close the school then staff who are not required to work should be paid as normal and should not be expected to use annual leave.

We wish our brothers and sisters in Teaching Unions all the best with their action and trust that it will achieve their aims, I’m sure we all share concerns over the current direction of travel for education and this just reinforces the importance of UNISON membership.