Mar 20


The Chancellor had another opportunity to announce emergency funding for schools in his spring statement last week.

Instead, he chose to do nothing, leaving school communities alone to deal with the biggest funding crisis in a generation.

With a new Education Secretary, Damian Hinds, and local elections looming across the country this May, the nation will be engaged in a national conversation about the state of our public services.

We must work to make sure the school funding crisis is front and centre in the media and with politicians at this time.

It’s time to step up the pressure, that’s why we’ve produced an Action Toolkit for campaigners.

At the General Election 2017, the force of our campaigning led 750,000 people to switch their vote because of school funding. It’s time to get organising again to bring this issue to the top of the agenda in our communities.

We need to create a noise so loud that no one can ignore what’s happening to our schools.  

That means making a visible statement with window posters, leafleting our school gates, participating in the national banner action and holding community meetings.

With these actions big and small we can together ignite a scandal about school cuts in every corner of the country.

We mustn’t rest until every politician knows that there are millions of voters who are well informed and willing to use their votes and voices to fight for our children’s education.

In the toolkit you’ll find resources, order forms, signup sheets. Everything you’ll need to get organising in your community with more to come.

If you have any questions just reply to this email.

Thank you so much for all you do,

Andrew Baisley

Campaigner, School Cut

Mar 12

Workload announcement is a beginning, but more than ambition needed
We are pleased the Government is finally beginning to recognise the teacher shortage crisis, but it will be seen in classrooms round the country whether today’s announcement makes any practical difference, says Kevin Courtney, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union.
Kevin Courtney said: “We are pleased the Government is beginning to recognise the scale of the challenge in teacher recruitment and retention and says it is willing to work with us to tackle these related problems.

“We will fully engage, and urge our members to take up the issue of workload in schools.

“But the Government needs more than ambition if these efforts are to work. School accountability needs fundamental reform, not tinkering. School leaders need to be know what the Government and Ofsted expects of them, not just what they don’t expect. The Government needs to recognise that funding cuts are also now driving up workload – with class sizes increasing in two-thirds of secondary schools and teachers facing cut backs in preparation time. And the Government needs to recognise that it must deal with the growing uncompetitiveness of teacher pay.”

Jan 30


If you would like to attend this course please email Julia Rex at for registration including your name, contact email and workplace so that the system can register you.
FREE CPD giving advice on Anxiety, Compulsion and Tics.

This fantastic session has been well received by both teachers and those individuals who suffer from Generalised Anxiety Disorder, OCD, and Tourette’s.

Date: Wednesday, 28th February, 2018
Time: From 5pm
Location: Pontlands Park, West Hanningfield Road, Great Baddow, Essex, CM2 8HR.
Refreshments will be included

This twilight CPD session ‘is a must’ for anyone working with young people.

To book register here or email Julia Rex and Ellie Manns at

Speaker: Stephen Challen, Chelmsford (Essex) ADHD Support Group. Stephen is an inspirational and motivational speaker who brings a unique understanding and extensive personal experience to his sessions.

The CPD session will give advice and information about Anxiety, Compulsion and Tics and will include an introduction to anxiety, the symptoms and how anxiety affects the individual.
Stephen will also:
• Explain Compulsions and OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)
• Explain Tics and Tic Disorders
• Outlines Key Advice and Help within a School Setting
• Run a Q&A Session

Nov 06


Just a reminder about dates of various meetings this month including a couple of events in Colchester which you are welcome to attend.
Wednesday 8th November ‘Asbestos in Schools’ 7.30pm Friends Meeting House, Colchester
A speaker from the Joint Union Action Committee on Asbestos will address the meeting, which has been organised by the Colchester NEU(NUT Section) and the local Trades Council.
Thursday 9th November Essex NEU (ATL Section)  5pm-7pm Pontlands Park Hotel, Chelmsford, CM2 8HR
ATL Section National President, Niamh Sweeney, will address the meeting on ‘Challenges to protect education in the future’.
If you are interested in attending please let Jeff Fair know –
Saturday 11th November Colchester NEU(NUT Section) Autumn Social  12-2pm at the North Hill Hotel, Colchester.
An informal social occasion for members in the Colchester area. Sandwiches and a free drink provided.
Saturday 18th November NEU (NUT Section) Eastern Region Council 10.30am Cambridge Belfry Hotel, Cambourne, CB23 6BW
All of our Essex NUT Section Executive are invited to this meeting and it is important that Essex is well represented. Please confirm with me or Jerry whether you will be attending.
Wednesday 22nd November 5.30pm The Bell, Danbury, CM3 4DT
Third Joint Officers Meeting of Essex Executive Committees of NUT and ATL Sections
Minutes of the last meeting are attached. Agenda for this meeting to follow.
Monday 27th November Essex NEU(NUT Section) Division Council
5.15pm Executive Committee  6pm Division Council
Essex County Cricket Ground, Chelmsford
Agendas, minutes etc to follow.
December appears to be free!
Look forward to seeing you at some of the above meetings.
David Evans
Admin Secretary
Essex NEU (NUT Section)
Oct 14

Health and Safety Report Division October 2017

Health and Safety Report Division October 2017

Grenfell Fire Disaster Ramifications

The National Education Union (NEU), National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) and Association of School & College Leaders (ASCL) have published joint guidance on fire risk assessments in schools which can be found here

The NEU, NAHT and ASCL are also urging the Government to introduce a legal requirement that all new and refurbished school buildings are fitted with a sprinkler system.

The publication of Building Bulletin 100: Design for Fire Safety in Schools in 2007 was a landmark in improving fire safety in schools, setting out what school design teams should do to protect lives as well as the fabric of buildings. In 2016 the Dfe made available a consultation document which suggested the weakening of regulations and the 2007 document. This has now been withdrawn.

On 23 June 2017 the DfE, through the Education and Skills Funding Agency, contacted all ‘responsible bodies’ for fire safety in schools, attaching a survey, for return by 30 June. The survey asked whether schools were over 18 metres high, if cladding was used externally and if so what materials were they comprised of. Where, according to survey responses, cladding on school buildings was suspected to contain this material, affected schools were asked enter the ‘testing and inspection’ process, but only if the school building was 18 metres or higher. The DfE has advised that two schools failed these tests and both have been inspected by the Fire and Rescue Service who confirmed that appropriate measures were in place to mitigate the risks and that the buildings were safe for continued use. Further details about this can be found at

The unions have raised concerns with the DfE that only schools 18 metres or higher, with ACM cladding, were included in the testing process. Even in buildings where other fire precautions are well-maintained and which are not used for overnight accommodation, understanding the type of the cladding on a particular building and the extent of its combustibility will help inform the risk assessment and property protection process.

The NEU, NAHT and ASCL are calling upon the Government to survey all school buildings to determine whether any inappropriate cladding has been used in their construction. Given that nearly 90% of schools also contain asbestos, the DfE should also use this survey to establish the location and condition of all asbestos in our schools to prevent any exposure to this deadly material.


Schools Health Safety and Welfare meeting 6th July 2017

Fire Safety

We looked at the possibility of implications from the Grenfell Tower fire, Essex have sent a letter to schools to remind them to enact termly fire drills and to check fire risk assessments. Further investigations are being carried out and Essex was waiting for Government advice.

However it was noted that some fire testing cladding assumes that the cladding is the only fire protection for the whole wall, so if a school’s cladding fails the test to what extent is this an indicator of the risk of a Grenfell type scenario?

It was reiterated that schools are at a much lower risk that high rise residential buildings such as Grenfell because most schools are not residential, if a fire broke out it would be quickly identified and there are systems in place for the quick evacuation of pupils and staff. As far as is known there has not been a fire related fatality of a child in a school since WW2.

This item will be further discussed at the next meeting on the 17th October.

Accident statistics were discussed for the period from 1st January to 31st March.

ECC SCHOOLS – Employees only – Slips, Trips and falls

There is a decrease of 12 (39 – 27) since the last quarter showing a decrease of incidents associated with slipping on either food or wet floors during dinner time. It is too early to say whether or not this is a trend.


ECC SCHOOLS – Employees Only Violence

There were 87 reported incidents of violence.  26 incidents took place at one non mainstream school a decrease of 7 from last quarter and 26 incidents at one special school. This compares to 60 other accidents to employees in this period.


Outdoor Play Equipment

The inspection and maintenance of outdoor play equipment was discussed. It was noted that such facilities should be checked on installation and then inspected annually. Most schools use Universal Services for this and it is up to each school to set up a service contract. There is also guidance about how to check the equipment between visits on the Infolink. Schools who haven’t got a service contract can phone the H&S line for advice.

Asbestos Removal Project

An update on the project to remove asbestos from school boilers was given. Three different contractors were employed to carry out remedial removal works. The subsequent remedial and removal works have been completed over the summer. The project was completed more quickly and at less cost than expected. A fuller report identifying what has been learnt will be written soon. The project successfully raised profile of asbestos management in schools.

Terrorist Attacks

We considered the possibility of a terrorist attack on schools.  We were reminded that information on bomb threats etc. is available via the critical incidents section of Infolink, although a more direct link is to be placed in the Health and Section, in order to aid quick access. When non-familiar people are hanging around schools members shouldn’t hesitate to call the police, where they suspect a security issue and the police won’t hesitate to attend. The procedures regarding when a school needs to be locked down and the management of critical incidents are to be revisited and reissued as necessary.


Hoist alert

This is an alert issued from the 24th August about the Freeway Easy Fit hoists with a swivel trolley. Apparently the pin on the swivelling trolley can become loose and incorrectly fitted.




HSE use of ladders

Following a recent fatal accident investigation, HSE is strongly advising all duty holders and users of combination ladders to ensure that they:

  • carry out pre-use checks;
  • use them in accordance with instructions;
  • check the locking mechanism(s).

Failure to do so could result in serious accidents.

Telescopic ladders. 

The use of telescopic ladders is growing more popular due to their ease of storage and convenience; however, there are numerous issues with many of these products due to the number of components involved and their construction. For instance

  •   the stiles are prone to greater bending;
  •   they are prone to greater bending of the frame.

The issues are likely to increase with the height of the ladder.

The situation is compounded by significant numbers of substandard products that are being made available on the UK market.  These are often low cost products that are attractive and are imported from outside the EU. Some of these have been implicated in serious accidents, including fatalities. The relevant European Standard – BS EN 131-6:2015 – provides more information on the design requirements.

Duty holders and users should ensure that:

  • pre-use checks on the ladders are thorough, checking the components and operation of each and every locking mechanism (often one or two per rung) and the associated release mechanism(s);
  • the ladders are stored well, transported carefully and maintained (including cleaning) as dirt and grit etc. can affect locking mechanisms;
  •  they understand the limitations and likely performance of their ladder, e.g. strength, bending etc.

Fuller advice can be found at




Oct 12

Southend Association General Meetings

All members are welcome to attend general meetings of the Association. The second meeting of the Autumn term will be held on Tuesday 14 November 2017 at The Rose Public House,Wakering Road, Great Wakering, Southend on Sea, Essex  SS3 0PY   from 18..00 until 19.00. Free light refreshments available. The meeting will consider Easter 2018 Conference motions, delegates and update on the National Education Union both locally and nationally. Members who have given email address to the union are sent notifications
First meeting of the new year Tuesday 30 January 2017 – same time and venue