Should teachers who are made redundant from one school be given help to get a job in another school?
Knowing the unfortunate view many people have of teachers, probably most of the public would say no. Why should they receive special treatment, they would ask.
But as a member of staff of Riverside College – where 40 staff are to be made redundant this summer, a year prior to closure – mentioned to me before I wrote this story, why is this any different from a company relocating its staff to another more viable site? After all, whether you work for Riverside College or Fullhurst College down the road, you’re still employed by the same local authority.
Any yet Riverside could make a teacher redundant and Fullhurst could fill a vacancy for a similar post with a teacher from outside Leicester.
Peter Flack, assistant secretary of the Leicester branch of the National Union of Teachers, wrote on this blog this morning about the subject:
It is extremely sad that the local authority, having spent so long ‘considering’ the future of Riverside – it is a year now since they first raised the issue – do not have in place proper, sustainable plans for ensuring both the continuing staffing of Riverside until it closes and the retention of these high quality staff in the city. The unions have many times made the case for a permanent, unattached supply pool that could be deployed to other schools as needed to cover vacancies, maternity leave, long-term sickness etc. There used to be one. Now, would be an ideal time to resurrect the idea and assure all staff at Riverside that if they do not secure posts in other schools prior to closure they will become part of that pool, with secure continuing employment.
In the interest of balance, I should point out that Leicester City Council says it is doing all it can to support staff made redundant.
Times are tough economically. The recession is biting the public sector. Is that more or less of a reason for Leicester to look after its own?