National organising meeting
Saturday 2 March, 12-3pm
1-19 Torrington Place
University College London
Nearest tube: Goodge Street
Registration from 11.30am
Called by UCU London Region. Supported by UCU Left, Branch Solidarity Network.
UCU in Transformation – Education in Crisis
- After the HE pay ballot – where next?
- What next in the USS dispute?
- After the strikes: building for FE Round 3
- The Augur review, Brexit and the threat of university bankruptcy
The unprecedented USS strikes last year triggered a huge upswing in union activism and membership. HE strikes inspired FE branches to win ballots for pay, despite a decade-long starvation of funds, a million course places lost and redundancies to match. But how do union activists keep up the momentum in the face of new challenges and threats?
- In Higher Education, senior managers have enjoyed golden years since tuition fees were hiked up to £9,000 in 2011. Pay was squeezed, and fees shot up. Huge building projects were started and competition for students between colleges accelerated. But the Tory review of HE under James Augur, a City banker, will likely report that the current model is unsustainable. Where will the axe fall and who will pay for it? What will this mean for pensions, pay and union organisation? What are we going to do?
- In Further Education, the strikes are making progress, but we need to take the arguments further. The money is there. There is cash for Principals’ Pay, Mergers and the wasting of funds in general. How do we build a bigger campaign to bring back FE colleges into public control and end incorporation?
The meeting is timed to take place following the HE pay ballot. We can expect the vote to be overwhelming for strike and ASOS. And if the turnout is over 50%, then the meeting will need to discuss the impending action. If it is below 50%, we face new, urgent questions. What next?
The meeting will also take place only a few weeks before the third wave of strikes in FE, where up to twenty colleges will be taking action.