Nottingham College staff have announced a further 14 days of strikes.
By the end of this week, members of the University and College Union (UCU) will have walked out for 15 days already this academic year over disputes on changes to contracts and concerns over excessive workload.
The new wave of strikes comes as staff accuse the college on reneging on promises over workload, claiming that the college has backtracked on a commitment to limit teaching to 24 hours a week while a new contract is negotiated.
Strikes at Nottingham College
The second wave of strikes will consist of three- and four-day walkouts over a four-week period in November. The full strike dates for the second wave are:
· Tuesday 5, Wednesday 6 and Thursday 7 November.
· Monday 11, Tuesday 12, Wednesday 13 and Thursday 14 November.
· Monday 18, Wednesday 20 and Friday 22.
· Monday 25, Tuesday 26, Thursday 28 and Friday 29 November.
UCU general secretary Jo Grady said: “For months we have been trying to negotiate with the college, but it has refused to budge and has forced staff to take this unprecedented action. The college’s refusal to work with us has left staff with no choice but to continue their action.
“The support for the strikes among staff and from elsewhere has been really encouraging. UCU members have made it clear that they are willing to fight against inferior contracts that will ultimately diminish the learning experience for students in Nottingham.”
Nottingham College CEO, John van de Laarschot said:
“UCU’s intention to escalate industrial action is extremely disappointing. We’ve been in constant dialogue with UCU at national level over the last few days, over the weekend and this morning, in an attempt to bridge the gap between the reported concerns of their members and the college’s offer. We’ve made a series of concessions specifically to address these concerns relating to trust, pay and workload but today it looks as if this was to no avail.
"The College has not reneged on any commitments made. We are committed to ongoing dialogue and action to resolve the situation but we need our striking teachers to return to work so that we can deliver for our students and work together, collaboratively, to secure a long term solution that works for all. An additional 14 days of strike action will serve only to increase the detrimental impact on our students and the college.”