Excellent first members meeting of our new Association, representing all NUT members in Nottinghamshire outside the city of Nottingham.
35 members came to the meeting, a mixture of primary, secondary and special schools were represented. Many were attending their first local union branch meeting, which was great to see.
Lots of very fruitful discussion and members were well looked after by our hosts at the Mogul-E-Azam Restaurant in the centre of Nottingham.
After we unanimously adopted new rules for the association as required by the National Union, we ratified existing Nottinghamshire NUT policies and then had a serious discussion about the crisis in our schools, where many, many teachers are struggling under the combined weight of pointless and relentless data crunching, management bullying and excessive workload.
Members were impressed by the tremendous success achieved at Alfreton Grange Academy in Derbyshire immediately before Christmas, in which the NUT forced management to abandon the 9 period day imposed without consultation and reinstate the standard 5 periods preferred by teachers and students alike. The message of this dispute is that if we act together in schools we can win gains for our members and for the students we teach.
Annual Conference is coming at Easter so a long discussion took place about the motions our association should prioritise for discussion. Only 7 motions can be supported by the Association from More motions than we can submit were promoted, but eventually, after much discussion, we settled on the 7 we supported. These included motions on boycotting SATs, supporting refugees, defending trade union rights, promoting the rights of disabled teachers and fighting for fair pay for supply teachers.
The next meeting of the Association will be on February 11, followed by the AGM on March 16. Details of times, venues and topics for discussion will be out soon. Would be great to see even more new faces at the meetings to come.
Liam Conway (Secretary, Nottinghamshire Association of Teachers)
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