Unions, stand up and fight

3rd July 2009 at 01:00

At a time when elected representatives are exposed lining their pockets at public expense, what sort of a trade union tugs its forelock in deference to these "financially-straitened" times? The answer, judging from the letter from the general secretary of the Association of Headteachers and Deputes in Scotland, is: only a useless "trade union".

Let me explain. Members make proposals at meetings. If most other members present agree, the proposal becomes policy. But strike action can be taken only when a majority of all members agree by means of a ballot.

No education trade union has recently balloted its members on strike action and, if any did, the vast majority of rank and file members have the option of approving or rejecting this suggestion. The system is called democracy, and it is usually a difficult one to grasp for individuals accustomed to power.

I shall never be eligible for membership of the AHDS. If I were, I would prefer to join an organisation that is willing to fight for pupils and stand up for its members.

James Forbes, Corstorphine High Street, Edinburgh.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now