Thank you Michael Gove! In response to your attacks, thirty-three teachers packed into Lewisham NUT's General Meeting tonight.
The meeting was largely made up from young, primary, women members, (with some of the secondary regulars stuck meeting coursework deadlines). Twelve teachers were at their first Lewisham NUT General Meeting, including two new primary school reps.
There were lots of good suggestions made - including very practical ones such as monthly meet-ups to get new reps together for after-school discussions and 'meet-and-greets' after school to help pull teachers together from schools where the Union isn't (yet!) as strong.
After a report from Annual Conference delegates and an update on Gove's latest pronouncements, the following motion was pulled together from the ideas from the meeting - and agreed unanimously:
Lewisham NUT agrees to:
a) Confirm our twinning with Liverpool NUT/schools and support for a London march and rally on June 27th
b) Encourage every school group to hold a school meeting, inviting NASUWT colleagues as well, to discuss the attacks on pay, conditions and education - and to prepare for strike action to oppose them. As part of that preparation, to collect for hardship funds and to encourage members to 'save to go on strike'
d) Build for a turnout from every school at the NUT Reps Briefing on Monday May 20th at Lewisham Town Hall
e) Campaign for every school to adopt a pay policy in line with the NASUWT/NUT check-list but, where schools fail to agree such a policy, to build co-ordinated strike action across those Lewisham schools, and wider across London.
f) Contact every Lewisham councillor seeking their support for the Union's campaign for education and for the Council to recommend a pay policy in line with the NASUWT/NUT check-list
g) Prepare publicity materials for parents explaining our campaign e.g. as being against cuts and privatisation, against lower morale and longer working hours, against 'teaching-to-the-test', for properly-funded education and sufficient school places. We should seek to co-ordinate a day when leaflets are distributed across the borough, and wider across London.
h) Call on the NUT and NASUWT to confirm, before the end of May, the calendar of regional and national action to follow June 27th and, in response to Gove's latest attacks, to consider bringing the regional action forward to July.
i) Ask the NUT Executive to call on other TUC unions to take co-ordinated strike action on the same day as our national action next term
j) To discuss with other NUT Associations about whether, if it should prove necessary, we should call for a Special Conference to review our campaign to defend pay, conditions and education.