FE fights back - share

FE fights back

FE staff in England are getting a raw deal from their employers. Workloads have never been higher while average pay packets have shrunk and the latest kick in the teeth - this year's recommended 1% pay rise - has not even been implemented in over 40% of colleges. UCU's Sean Vernell has argued that national pay bargaining mechanisms are failing the sector.

Meanwhile the latest college accounts show 17 college principals earned over £200,000 in 2016/17 and over a third enjoyed a pay rise of 10% or more.

UCU is launching a 'second wave' of our campaign for better pay and better jobs in FE and many branches are now preparing to take up issues like pay, workload and job security directly with your college management.

The Association of Colleges (AoC) has confirmed that they are now refusing to negotiate with us on pay while local disputes, aimed at improving pay and conditions continue.

We'll now submit a claim for 5% or £1500 (whichever is greater) to every college not currently in dispute in England. Where there's no positive response we'll start balloting in June for strike action. 

We'll only be able to take action if at least 50% of members vote so if you support our FE fights back campaign we'll need your help to spread the word when the ballot opens. 

UCU FE strike poster thumb Taking action:

  • hundreds of staff at Hull College Group will strike in May against job cuts planned as part of a restructure
  • members at Tower Hamlets College and Hackney Community College will take futher strike action in May. Alongside colleagues from Redbridge, Sandwell and  Sunderland colleges, they had already taken strike action this year, having walked out in February and  again in March
  • staff at Bradford College and Kirklees College have also now voted to take action over job cuts and contract changes.

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Please get in touch with your local UCU branch if you would like to get involved in campaigning for a better deal for staff.


Please share our campaign video below, also available to share on Facebook:


We also have a selection of campaign posters for you to put up around your workplace.

Fearless, Fervent, Fed up - FE campaign poster It's time for change - FE campaign poster Defend our jobs - FE campaign poster

Fight back strike dates

Wednesday 9 May

Hull College Group

Friday 11 May

Tower Hamlets College
Hackney Community College

Monday 14 May

Tower Hamlets College
Hackney Community College

Tuesday 15 May

Tower Hamlets College
Hackney Community College
Sandwell College - agreement reached; called off

Wednesday 16 May

Sandwell College - agreement reached; called off

Thursday 17 May

Hull College Group
Epping Forest College
Sandwell College - agreement reached; called off

Friday 18 May

Hull College Group
Sandwell College - agreement reached; called off

Tuesday 22 May

Lambeth College
Lewisham Southwark College

Wednesday 23 May

Lambeth College
City and Islington College (CCG)
College of Haringey Enfield and North East London (CCG)
Westminster Kingsway College (CCG)
Lewisham Southwark College

Thursday 24 May

Lambeth College
City and Islington College (CCG)
College of Haringey Enfield and North East London (CCG)
Westminster Kingsway College (CCG)

Friday 25 May

City and Islington College (CCG)
College of Haringey Enfield and North East London (CCG)
Westminster Kingsway College (CCG)

Tuesday 5 June

City and Islington College (CCG)
College of Haringey Enfield and North East London (CCG)
Westminster Kingsway College (CCG)
Havering College 

Wednesday 6 June

City and Islington College (CCG)
College of Haringey Enfield and North East London  (CCG)
Westminster Kingsway College  (CCG)

Thursday 7 June

City and Islington College (CCG)
College of Haringey Enfield and North East London  (CCG)
Westminster Kingsway College (CCG)
Havering College

Friday 8 June

City and Islington College (CCG)
College of Haringey Enfield and North East London (CCG)
Westminster Kingsway College (CCG)
Havering College

Tuesday 12 June

Havering College

Last updated: 17 May 2018