EIS union steps up campaign to protect Western Isles education

Created on: 14 Apr 2022 | Last modified: 14 Apr 2022

The EIS trade union is stepping up its campaign to ensure Comhairle nan Eilean Siar / Western Islands Council consults with staff via their trade unions, parent councils, pupils and communities over proposed changes to secondary school timetables.

The ‘harmonisation’ of timetables across the four secondary schools would also see e-Sgoil, an online learning platform, introduced in every subject choice column. This has caused the EIS Local Association great concern over the implications of extensive online learning due to the health and safety of pupils, learning and teaching practices, child protection, and staff terms and conditions.

EIS Local Association Secretary, Karen Graham, said, “We are asking members of the community to read our statement of concerns on the EIS website and to sign this petition ‘Public Support face-to-face teaching from professionally registered teachers’ calling on the Comhairle to use the appropriate consultation and negotiation forums in order that we get the best outcome for our learners – not the cheapest. We want transparency over decision-making with effective consultation processes used, a guarantee that face to face teaching will be the primary method of teaching and that a GTCS registered teacher will be in any classroom. It is unacceptable that the Comhairle have sent the subject choices on to pupils without clear subject provision being provided and without consulting with staff.”

The EIS is also hosting a hustings for candidates in the upcoming local elections where the focus will be on educational priorities of EIS members. Council candidates can get a link to the hustings via Karen Graham, EIS local association secretary by emailing westernisles@eis.org.uk.