Teachers in three local authority areas back move to dispute over school safety

Created on: 15 Dec 2020 | Last modified: 01 Mar 2021

Teachers in three local authority areas – Glasgow, Fife and West Dunbartonshire – have today (Tuesday) voted overwhelmingly in favour of declaring a formal dispute with their employers over failure to provide a safe working environment for staff in light of the continuing threat from the COVID-19 pandemic.

In West Dunbartonshire, 91% of teachers backed the move to a dispute, on a turnout of 75%. In Glasgow, 93% of teachers voted in favour, one a turnout of 63%. In Fife, 90% of teachers voted in favour, on a turnout of 53%.

The EIS Local Associations in these areas will be seeking an urgent response from the Councils involved to member concerns. 

Commenting, EIS General Secretary Larry Flanagan said, “These votes are clear evidence of the anxieties teachers feel with regard to school Covid security. The First Minister today has cited rising infection levels in parts of the country and hinted that some areas may have to move back to Level 4 - all the more likely if there is a post-Christmas spike in infection levels.”

“We have seen schools in Wales move to remote learning as part of the effort to drive down infection levels and yet in Scotland there isn’t a single additional mitigation put in place for schools even at Level 4. Teachers want to see schools open but not at all costs. Both the Scottish Government and local authorities should be transparent in setting out the benchmarks which would trigger a move to remote or blended learning.”

More info at: www.eis.org.uk/Information/NotAtAllCosts

Note: A number of ballots in other LA areas remain open.