'Black hole' in budgets threatens workload deal

6th June 2003 at 01:00
THE funding crisis is once again threatening progress towards cutting teachers' hours, reports William Stewart.

The National Association of Head Teachers is warning it will be unable to recommend changes in teachers' contracts to its members next week because it is still not satisfied that the workload deal will be properly funded.

A meeting of signatories to the agreement, on Monday, was due to put the finishing touches to contract changes so that they could go out for a final consultation. But David Hart, NAHT general secretary, this week repeated his claim there was a pound;2.5 billion "black hole" in funding for the agreement. He had no confidence that the resources would be made available in time.

Mr Hart said he had recently received separate warnings of lack of cash from secondary heads in Southend, the East Riding of Yorkshire and the Catholic diocese of Brentwood. "Just blindly attempting to implement something that we know we cannot accomplish is simply not acceptable," he said.

"There should be a delay until we are satisfied that the Government is putting substantial additional money on the table to secure the agreement in 20045 and 20056."

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