• These two documents contain important protections for all teachers on a range of issues.
• Nicky Morgan wants schools to stop using them and to set their own terms and conditions,
• Which is why you need to strike on 5th July.
Assemble at the top of New Walk, Granville Road, from 10.30
March down New Walk to Town Hall Square, then along Gallowtree Gate and, via the Clock Tower, down High Street to a rally in Jubilee Square at 12.00.
Why should we have a Picket?
July 5th will see us start a new programme of industrial action in defence of our pay and conditions of service, which are under threat as a result of proposals in the government's education White Paper. It is a chance for us to fight for the education system that we all believe in. With the NASUWT not joining us in this strike, it is all the more important to hold a picket line at your school. This will have two effects - to encourage other teachers to join the NUT and join our action, and to encourage members of other unions to put pressure on their leadership to join the fight.
What are you planning to do on the strike day?
Above all else, striking is about doing something collectively to put pressure on employers or the government to listen and take notice. And we need to make the biggest possible impact, by making sure that all our members are out on strike. A picket line, and going to the organised rally and demonstration, will help boost the impact of the strike and make it as visible as possible. Picketers can talk to anyone going into work. They can argue that all workers should respect the democratic decision to strike and remind other staff that they should not be covering members' lessons. Other union members may genuinely forget the strike is on, and a picket line can remind them. Some workers may fear that they will be disciplined if they strike. You need to explain that this is not true and they cannot be disciplined for joining a strike covered by a legal ballot. Workmates, who are not in the union, might want to come out on strike too, to show their support. If they join the NUT on the picket line, they can strike without being disciplined. The government characterises pickets as bullies. The truth is that pickets defend the democratic, collective decisions of workers. The real reason the government hates picketing is because they know it makes strikes stronger, and that effective picketing can make our victory more secure.
Simple Steps to Organising a Picket Line
1. Hold a meeting in your school (or nearby) - discuss and agree what you plan to do on the strike day.
2. Have you got a workplace banner or placards? Why not see whether people might like to make some - you'd be amazed at the hidden talents that emerge. Alternatively, you can collect some from the union office. For slogans, let imagination run free. All sorts of people can come up with good ideas.
3. Collect leaflets from the union office to hand to parents/colleagues.
On the Day
1. Meet at the school gates at the agreed time. You could organise people to bring flasks of coffee or snacks for the picket.
2. Although there is no legal limit, guidance says that at any one time there can be six official picketers, handing out leaflets to parents and colleagues going into work. The rest of the people there are supporting the picket. You can call yourself a static demonstration if there are a large number of you.
3. You should stay outside the school gates and whilst you can ask colleagues in cars to stop to receive a leaflet, you should not cause an obstruction to the entrance to school.
4. You have a right to try to persuade any doubtfulmembers that they shouldn't cross and should join you, but picketers should not physically attempt to stop a person or vehicle from entering an office. This may only be done by speaking to people, distributing leaflets, or by carrying banners or placards putting forward the NUT's case.
5. Members of other teaching unions can join the NUT at any time, even at the picket line, and join our strike. Take some Membership Forms for the day in case anyone wishes to join.
6. The picket only needs to go on until around 9.00am, as by then all of the parents will have dropped off any children and all non-striking colleagues will have gone into work.
Then go to the March and Rally in Leicester City Centre
Even if some members cannot make the picket for personal reasons, ask them to meet you to travel to the rally. The march will assemble at the top of New Walk on Granville Road from 10.30 and march to Jubilee Square, via Town Hall Square at 11.00. This will be followed by a rally in Jubilee Square at 12.00.
Can non-union members strike?
Anyone eligible to join any striking union can join at any time - up to and including the day of the strike. Then they can legally join the strike, even if they were not balloted.
Are you doing anything illegal?
The strike is perfectly legal. You can't be disciplined or sacked for taking part, as long as your union has balloted and called you out.
What do you do if managers ask you if you're going on strike or pressure you not to?
You don't have to tell them, and the union does not have to give names. Just refer the manager to local union officers.
Our message to members who have been balloted is to support the dispute. Our message to non-members is to join the NUT and join the dispute.
Congratulations to all those who took part in the seven lobbies of supply teaching agencies that took place across the country on June 1st. Several members joined Leicester and Leicestershire NUT Supply Teachers Organisers, Simon Robinson and Helena Tendall, in lobbying five supply agencies during the half term break. The agencies were very reluctant to speak to the NUT, but Simon and Helena were interviewed by BBC Radio Leicester and did a fantastic job of highlighting the problems facing supply teachers. They have arranged to meet Assistant Mayor Sarah Russell to discuss the setting up of a Local Authority Supply Teachers' Register.