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Talks held as 150 strikers face sack

Striking lecturers at London's Southwark College were meeting managers as The TES went to press in an 11th-hour bid to reach a settlement, writes Ben Russell.

Principal Dorothy Jones has threatened to dismiss the 150 strikers if they do not return to work.

Lecturers' union NATFHE was hoping to salvage a deal. The two stumbling blocks to a settlement are the fate of sacked lecturer Chris Ryan, who has refused to take a management post, and plans to pilot use of the lecturers' agency ELS.

Ms Jones said she had been forced to consider sacking staff in the interests of students and the college. But she would consider a deal to end the bitter 11-week dispute.

She rejected claims that the threat of dismissal would damage the college even if staff returned. "I operate as a professional and I hope everybody else will operate professionally, " she said.

NATFHE branch secretary Stephen Rose said staff were fighting for a point of principle.

Chris Ryan, page 31

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