Created on: 08 Mar 2023 | Last modified: 25 May 2023
The entire EIS membership has been called out on strike on May 19 (as well as 30th and 31st, so far). The purpose of the strike action is to put pressure on the School to change its mind about withdrawing from the STPS teachers pension.
Although the School have said notice has been given to the STPS about withdrawal, your contracts do not change until August and withdrawal does not take place until then. There is still time for the School to change its mind.
Striking is the last resort as the School has not listened to all other entreaties. The stronger the strike turnout the more likely it will shorten the strike programme. We have emailed all members individually to confirm their strike day with them.
Yes, you should. Trade unions are democratic bodies and act for the collective good. The ballot was carried out independently and the result reflects the membership's mood as a whole. The subsequently called strikes apply to all members who are HGS employees.
Yes, because the EIS carried out a lawful statutory ballot for strike action that was overseen by an independent scrutineer. Furthermore, the EIS has issued the required statutory strike notice to the School and it has not been challenged or interdicted.
Yes, any industrial action is a breach of contract as you are withholding your labour. However, your breach of contract (i.e. strike action) is protected by law as we have obtained a lawful strike mandate.
You can't be legally dismissed for taking strike action, if:
You are therefore protected from dismissal on grounds related to the strike action for the first 12 weeks of the strike, thereafter, in theory, an employer may dismiss you if they have made an effort to resolve the dispute. There have been a few occasions where private companies have taken advantage of the law to intimidate striking workers.
It would be unprecedented for any EIS member to be disciplined or dismissed in Scotland for taking strike action, and we would fight any such victimisation of an EIS member robustly – using all the tools at our disposal including strike action and legal action.
No. Your service is not broken or reset by carrying out strike action – even if you were out on continuous strike action for 12 weeks. You do not however accrue service on days of strike action – in effect, your service will be paused on 19th May and resume on 22nd May without a break, i.e. it is not reset.
Your time is your own on a strike day. You can spend the time doing whatever you wish (except activity related to work). We hope that you will join a picket line in the morning and the local strike hub.
Technically, the role of an EIS picket is to:
In reality, picketing forms several other functions too:
Yes, we do, it may be found on our website.
No, you will not be working nor be paid whilst on strike. There is no need for you to carry out work in advance of the strike for any pupil/class or after the strike to catch up.
You do not need to advise the school in advance that you will be striking since we have provided the legal notice required on your behalf. By law, we do not need inform the school of individuals by name – simply the number of (teacher) members per workplace.
Yes, we will be, but we also encourage members to put their own stamp on the picketing and produce their own!
Trade unions issue exemptions to members to allow them to cross the picket line on strike days. We will provide exemption for teachers who are on school trips and who are within the first five months of pregnancy (as the strike may affect maternity pay). If a member wishes to attend school to support pupils sitting an exam on a strike day then we will also consider exemption requests for that purpose – but not for any teaching. Email Sarah Collins for more information.
Yes, we will be paying 50% of members net salaries. We will send members the weblink to the claim form shortly. You may make a claim for the first day after May 20th.
Trade unions that are members of the TUC or STUC do not cover for work that is not being carried out by strike action. The EIS would expect NASUWT and SSTA to advise their members, including supply teachers, that may be called in to break the strike.
Each strike day is deducted at 1/365th of your annual salary. However, as the tax, national insurance and pension deductions are not made then the net effect is less than 1/365th of your gross salary.
Yes, if you are contracted to work on a strike day.
Yes, legally we could only ballot you if you had advised us that you were working at the time or when the strike action was scheduled. The strike mandate produced by the ballot applies to all EIS members working in HGS. The mandate will also apply to new EIS members, i.e. those who joined after the statutory ballot.
No, no member taking strike action will be paid on a strike day.
The Scottish Public Pensions Agency offers no facility to access pensions in this way. The earliest teachers can take benefits from the scheme is when they reach the age of 55, unless they are granted ill-health retirement benefits.
No, the SPPA will not allow this.
Only EIS members may apply for an exemption to the Union and only for themselves. We will not be issuing any exemptions via employers.
The NASUWT chose not to strike on May 19 but will be joining us on following days.
No, other trade unions advise their members not to pick up work done by a striking worker.
Login to MyEIS via the EIS website and update your details.
Yes, since probationers are HGS employees.
It should not do so; if there is a risk that it will be affected, owing to exceptionally high rates of absence due to other factors, then we would grant such probationers an exemption. The TIS allows probationer teachers to be considered for Full Registration with GTCS within one school year (190 teaching days).
Over this period, it is acknowledged that a probationer may be absent from school for a range of reasons, such as, maternity or paternity leave, illness or jury duty.
Provided the probationer does not miss more than 20 days of their placement, they can still successfully complete probation and be eligible for full registration with GTCS. It is clear, therefore, that for the majority of probationers, participation in the planned strike action will not affect completion of the TIS.
If you join the EIS by or on May 18 then you will be covered by our strike mandate.
No, EIS members who are supply teachers will also be called on to strike (i.e. to refuse work). No EIS member should do work normally done by an EIS member who is on strike. No EIS member could be reasonably asked or instructed by a local authority to strike break for another EIS member.
No, you should not inform your school or council of your intention to take strike action. The EIS has already given notice with all the required information to your employer – there is nothing else any individual member needs to do.
As a striking worker, you cannot be asked to put measures in place to compensate for the fact that you will be withdrawing your labour on the strike day. Colleagues who are not striking should not be asked to deliver learning and teaching from home.
A strike day is not a national crisis of the kind of the pandemic and all covid-related provisions have been withdrawn.
Teachers cannot be directed to use their homes as workplaces. Regardless, teachers or other staff who are not on strike, should not be asked to carry out duties that would otherwise have been undertaken by striking colleagues.
This includes teaching pupils who are not in their usual classes. This applies whether working in school buildings or at home or another place of a teacher's choosing.
If you are asked by your employer after the strike if you carried out strike action then you should say "yes", but only after the strike.
Teachers can answer pupils' questions and provide factual information on the dispute and strike action. Extreme caution should be exercised on this with HGS as it may be sensitive to members speaking to pupils.
Care must be taken to ensure that pupils are not being asked to take "sides" in the dispute.
It is unlawful for trade unions to discipline members for breaking trade union solidarity by refusing to strike.
No, there will be no effect to paternity pay/leave entitlement.
No, we give Councils the number of members per workplace who are teachers (inc principal, headteachers etc) and who are associated professionals.