NUT members on strike in Bristol, March 2014 © Tim Lezard NUT members are to ballot for industrial action should the next government fail to increase funding for schools in England and Wales. Delegates at the union’s annual conference agree to hold the …
NUT members are to ballot for industrial action should the next government fail to increase funding for schools in England and Wales.
Delegates at the union’s annual conference agree to hold the ballot and to hold discussions with other teaching unions over post-election spending cuts proposed by both Tory and Labour parties.
NUT general secretary Christine Blower said: “The Coalition government has not protected education funding. Many schools have seen real terms cuts in their budgets, and have seen valuable local authority services cut back or lost altogether.
“The budget for 16-19 education has been cut by 14% in real terms. Overall funding for schools in Wales has been cut in real terms. In addition to cuts to day-to-day funding, capital funding in education has been cut by more than a third in real terms despite rising pupil numbers and the shortage of school places. Instead, the government has wasted money on its ideologically-driven academies and free schools programme.
“Teachers and students have been hit hard by the cuts. Teachers have seen job losses, worsening working conditions and restrictions on pay progression. Many serving teachers have been driven out of the profession, and many potential recruits to teaching lost.
“NUT conference has called for the teacher unions to work together to defend education. With pupil numbers up and with schools facing additional costs due to increases in employer National Insurance and pensions costs, the NUT is calling for all political parties to commit to investing to provide the additional school places we need and to protect education spending.
“We need a first class education system to support economic recovery. The NUT has today called for the restoration of education funding to the levels required to support this vital investment in our future, including improved pay and conditions to reverse the growing teacher recruitment and retention problem.”
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