Over 100 teachers face losing their jobs in North Lanarkshire

Staff at both Primary and High Schools are at risk of losing their jobs
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More than 100 teachers in North Lanarkshire are facing an uncertain future after the council told them they do not have jobs in the next school year.

Late on Friday afternoon North Lanarkshire Council emailed around 80 primary and 50 secondary teaching staff on fixed term contracts informing them they would not be offered positions after the summer holidays and would instead be assigned to the supply list.

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The email reads: “The workforce plans for August 2023 are in their final stages, and at present unfortunately we are unable to offer you a temporary or Fixed Term contract from August 2023 due to limited employment opportunities within the Primary sector at this time.

“You will be placed on the NLC temporary teaching supply list and we will email you should Head Teachers advise us of new long term temporary teaching cover requirements between now and August or throughout the new academic session. Head Teachers may also contact you directly in the new session if they have temporary short-term cover requirements.”

A council spokesperson said: “As is always the case, the number of contracts available is dependent on the number of vacancies and there are a limited number at this time. The council is not able to offer some newly qualified teachers and some teachers who were on a fixed term contract this year contracts for the next school session starting in August.

“Those affected will be placed on the supply teaching list and we will continue to match them with any vacancies that arise during the summer and during the next session.”

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Teaching union the EIS says it has received numerous emails from “very distressed” members.

The union’s general secretary Andrea Bradley, said: “The issuing of these notifications by North Lanarkshire Council, with no prior notice whatsoever, late on a Friday and within days of the summer holidays, has caused serious upset amongst the teachers affected.

“Instead of being able to start their well-earned summer break on a high, they are deeply anxious and worried about how they are going to cover the costs of food and housing as prices and mortgage rates and rents continue to soar.

“After years of study and training to become teachers, when class sizes are full to bursting, and when there’s insufficient support for children and young people with additional support needs, it is quite scandalous that highly qualified professionals face such casualisation and precarity.

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“While this particular case involves North Lanarkshire Council’s poor decision-making, precarity and lack of job security is endemic across Scotland as a result of serious under-funding of our Education system, first and foremost by the Scottish Government, but local authorities could be doing much more than they are too.

“There are hundreds, if not thousands of teachers, all over Scotland who are unable to progress in their lives because of lack of certainty that they will have a job from one week to the next.

“This is no way to staff a vital public service such as Education and it’s no way to treat workers in a country that aspires to be a Fair Work nation by 2025. The Scottish Government and local authorities need to stop playing politics with people’s lives and with our essential public services – our citizens deserve so much better.”

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