Taking action in higher education

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UCU election manifesto calls for investment in staff

19 November 2019 | last updated: 29 November 2019

The next government should invest in the further and higher education workforce, end the hostile environment for migrants and scrap arbitrary metrics like the Teaching Excellence Framework, UCU said today as it published its general election manifesto.

The union has identified six key areas for reform which it says would lead to a more sustainable post-16 education system. These include increased funding, making university admissions fairer and putting skills at the heart of the climate transition.

The manifesto also calls for action to hold institutions to account over workloads, casualisation, pay inequality and pensions - issues which will see staff at 60 UK universities take eight days of strike action from next week.

UCU general secretary, Jo Grady, said: 'Post-16 education is central to social justice and the success of our economy, but to reach its full potential it must be well-resourced and fully accessible. Our manifesto sets out key priorities for the next government that will help to ensure a fair and sustainable education system that can cater to the diverse needs of people across the UK.

'A key plank of the manifesto is investment in the workforce. Staff are the cornerstone of a successful education system and we must ensure that careers in higher, further, adult and prison education remain attractive.

'Ending the hostile environment for migrant workers, reforming university admissions and scrapping arbitrary metrics like the Teaching Excellence Framework should be key priorities for the incoming government. We also need to see robust action to hold institutions to account over issues relating to workloads, casualisation, pay inequality and pensions which are forcing members at 60 UK universities to take eight days of strike action from next week.'

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