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Island hopping

Last week's first meeting of the Scottish Joint Negotiating Committee since the Scottish Secretary announced he was going to abolish it proved a puzzling affair. The two unions most favourably disposed towards a pay review body, the NAS and the PAT, made no attempt within the teachers' panel to oppose the EIS motion denouncing the move. Perhaps they have just got used to losing the vote.

There was more startling news for the management side when Western Isles education chairman Roddy Macdonald revealed that every single member of staff in one of his schools had applied for early retirement. This is, in fact, a two- teacher primary.

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