Glasgow teachers give 'overwhelming' verdict on job cuts as strike ballot results revealed

Warning shot over plans to axe hundreds of teaching jobs

Nine out of 10 Glasgow teachers who took part in a trade union ballot have backed strike action over job cuts.

The Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS), the nation’s largest teaching union, said 96 per cent of its members voted for action short of strike, with 90 per cent backing strikes.

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The consultative ballot asked the views of more than 5,000 EIS members in Glasgow, amid a dispute with the local authority.

The union said it would move from a consultative ballot to a statutory one if there was no progress in resolving the row.

Glasgow City Council triggered a huge row in February after it emerged the SNP-run authority intended to axe 172 teaching posts this year, reducing by a total of 450 over the next three years. The move was agreed despite the SNP being committed nationally to increasing teacher numbers. 

However, the cuts may not save the amount of money anticipated by the council as Government ministers have signalled they could still withhold a share of a £145.5m pot of funding to councils if they fail to maintain teacher numbers.

Responding to the EIS ballot, a city council spokesperson said: “We will await the official confirmation and will continue to engage with our trade union colleagues.”

Jane Gow, secretary of EIS Glasgow, said: “The EIS is crystal clear that the loss of jobs vital to education provision in Glasgow will irreparably damage the life chances of many of the city’s young people and most especially those with additional support needs.

“Already 45 of our primary schools will see all teachers fully class committed with only the head teacher available to provide support for all pupils, staff and parents.

“This will mean there is little or no capacity for small group or one to one provision for those pupils in most need of nurture, literacy and numeracy support.”

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She warned of a fall in seconardary school teachers as pupil rolls rise, leading to larger class sizes.

“The steady erosion of funding to Education in Glasgow has impacted on our ASN sector with young people who have complex needs being placed in schools not designed to meet those needs,” she said.

“This has had the most profound effect on our most vulnerable of pupils and seen a dramatic rise in violent incidents because of a severe decrease in resources to support dysregulated behaviours.”

She added: “Teachers in Glasgow have today said No to cutting teacher numbers and the irreparable damage this would inflict on our young people now and in decades to come.

“This consultative ballot will be followed by a statutory one if there is no movement from GCC to end this dispute and reverse these swingeing cuts to education in Glasgow.”



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