Glasgow teachers ready to strike

The Glasgow executive of the Educational Institute of Scotland is to back secondary schools that call strike ballots over staff cuts.

Fears that up to 50 jobs could be lost prompted angry outbursts from schools. The executive last week agreed to support ballots in any school which is losing one or more staff. At least eight secondaries fall into that category.

The union's Glasgow committee of management will hear motions next Thursday calling for industrial action in individual schools and across the city. If, as expected, the committee ratifies the executive's decision, it will be up to the union's emergency committee in Edinburgh to decide whether to proceed with the ballots. Both May Ferries, the national president, and Ian McCalman, the vice-president, are Glasgow teachers.

At Hillhead High, where the classics department has been scrapped, the one remaining Higher Latin pupil will be provided with a private tutor in school time. Ken Cunningham, Hillhead's headteacher, said the loss of 0.9 full-time equivalent staff had caused "severe disruption across the timetable".

Meanwhile, the grievance taken out by EIS nursery heads against the city council's decision to exclude children whose parents have not paid nursery charges is being contested by the authority. Glasgow says the heads have no case under complaint procedures.

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