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The only UK teaching union - otherwise known as the smallest union in Scotland - is also concerned about becoming becalmed.

The National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers had plenty to keep it busy last week, but just how much of a UK union is it? One motion discussed behind closed doors lamented: "This AGM notes with concern the lack of motions from Scottish branches at national conference and calls upon the Scottish executive to investigate the reasons for this."

The NAS was also concerned about its good name for it appears, according to another motion debated in private session, that "false and malicious allegations" are often levelled against its members. It called for "effective action against the perpetrators". Other unions beware.

It did score a coup, however. Brian Wilson attended his first teacher union conference as Education Minister. He was thus able at last to meet Tino Ferri which, he was relieved to learn, is his real name since the NAS enfant terrible is normally described in the public prints as "angry Tino Ferri".

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