A loud and lively protest took place outside Nottingham City Council’s head office this week, by those teachers, school support staff and parent who oppose the City Council’s plan to alter the school year holiday arrangements.
The protest was organised by the NASUWT teachers union and attended by members of many unions as well as parents and pupils. The main slogan chanted was “Five term year, bad idea!”. The National Union of Teachers has already taken several days of strike action on this issue .
Although at first sight this is a local dispute between unions at Nottingham City and the local council, the issue has national significance not least because the City Council has threatened to force all school staff onto the new working patterns by a ‘dismissal and re-engagement’ process.
Whilst talks between the NUT, City Council and ACAS are currently underway, it does appear the Council is not at this stage prepared to back down. It is essential that the other school unions support the NUT by joining any strike action.
A group of local parents –PA5TY – is also organising against the Council’s proposals and has already organised a well attended public meeting as well as a protest by parents.