From education to employment

NEU Sixth Form Ballot Result

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NEU members in sixth form colleges have voted overwhelmingly in a re-ballot to take industrial action to win an acceptable fully funded pay rise for 2022/23. This result once again demonstrates the resolve of NEU members to win a fair pay rise.

The formal trade dispute is with the Secretary of State for Education because of the failure to make available additional funding to allow Sixth Form college employers to pay a fully funded above inflation increase to teachers with effect from 1 September 2022.

NEU members who teach in sixth form colleges in England have voted to continue with strike action in response to an offer for the current academic year of 22/23 from the Sixth Form Colleges Association (SFCA).

Sixth form college teachers have seen a 20% cut in real terms pay since 2010. The September 2022 pay offer would see the majority of teachers receive a 5% pay award, rising to 8.9% for a small minority.

The question put was: Would you be prepared to take industrial action in support of a fully funded pay rise?

89.4%voted YES on a turnout of 53.3%

The ballot opened on 13th March and closed on 21 April 2023.  

NEU teachers in 74 sixth form colleges will be taking strike action on April 27th and May 2nd alongside NEU school teacher members. The success of the re-ballot gives the union a mandate to continue to take strike well into the next academic year.

Kevin Courtney, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union, said:    

“The sector has suffered real-terms pay cuts in the region of 20% since 2010. Further below inflation pay increases are simply unacceptable to our members. Strike action is always taken with great regret, but the sentiment of this ballot result is clear: enough is enough.   

‘At recent negotiations between education trade unions and the Secretary of State Gillian Keegan, the Minister did not respond to questions about the dispute with sixth form teachers. She had promised to respond in detail to questions about sixth form funding by letter, but almost a month later that has still not arrived.

‘The government must listen and take notice of the effect real-terms pay cuts are having on our members, and, if we continue down this unsustainable path, the consequences that their leaving the profession will have on both the sector and the young people they teach.” 

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