Scotland

NASUWT steps up Curriculum for Excellence industrial action

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Teachers are to step up industrial action by boycotting some work associated with the Curriculum for Excellence.

Teachers' union the NASUWT said it had given notice it will escalate its current action from Thursday 12 May.

The union claims that curriculum changes have "simply piled on the pressure" on to teachers.

The Scottish government said it was "disappointed" but would work with teachers to address their concerns.

In January ministers set up a working group to examine ways of reducing bureaucracy and extra workload linked to the new curriculum and qualifications.

But at the weekend, another teaching union, the EIS, said the working group's recommendations did not go far enough and announced it would ballot members over industrial action.

The NASUWT said it would instruct its members to refuse to comply with planning, assessment and reporting work linked to Curriculum for Excellence which does not meet the recommendations made by the working group.

That could see them refusing to submit daily or weekly plans as well as not producing detailed folios of pupils' work to support assessments.

'Excessive workload'

Union general secretary Chris Keates said the industrial action would protect teachers and pupils "in the face of the failure of government and employers to do so".

She added: "Excessive workload is blighting teachers' professional lives and affecting their health and wellbeing, yet the government and employers are failing to act.

"The reforms to the curriculum and qualifications systems have simply piled on the pressure.

"Recommendations made by a government working group set up to examine these issues are being ignored by employers and schools.

"With 87% of teachers citing workload as their biggest concern and two thirds considering leaving the profession all together, this situation cannot be allowed to continue.

"Teachers are tired, exhausted and disillusioned."

Jane Peckham, national official for the NASUWT in Scotland, said: "Talented teachers are being driven out of the profession because of the burden of excessive workload.

"Yet the government and employers fail to act.

A Scottish government spokesperson said: "The decision to recommend industrial action is disappointing and is in no one's interests, least of all pupils and their families.

"We will continue to work with unions and teachers on issues relating to planning and assessment."

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