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Strike and protest confirmed at K College in row over job losses

1 October 2012

Members of UCU have overwhelmingly voted for a half-day strike on Monday 8 October at K College.

On a strong turnout, with nearly three-quarters (71%) voting, a massive 93% backed the call for the strike. UCU members will join members of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) at K College who are also walking out that afternoon.
Members of the UCU and NUT at all five sites of the college will take action and congregate at the Tonbridge site at 4.30pm to protest outside the governors' meeting where a plan to axe jobs is on the agenda.
The dispute centres on proposals to axe 145 jobs. The college's plans leave the entire workforce of over 1,000 people at risk of redundancy. They come just two months after a previous reorganisation, which was supposed to secure the college's long-term viability, saw 50 jobs go.
The unions said they regretted the fact that strike action had been forced on their members, but that it was absolutely vital they made a strong representation to the governors. They believed a half-day strike was the best way to minimise disruption for learners and still ensure the governors were left in no doubt about the staff's opposition to the plans.
The unions said the large number of job losses is not justified and pointed to the fact that the college's staff costs are below the further education sector average.
UCU regional support official, Adam Lincoln, said: 'Strike action is never entered into lightly, but the overwhelming mandate from members at K College demonstrates how determined they are to fight these ill-conceived and unjustified proposals.
'Staff from all five sites will gather ahead of the afternoon governors' meeting to make it absolutely clear that they oppose unnecessary job cuts, which would see 200 staff leaving the college in one calendar year.'
NUT Regional Officer, Nick Childs, added: 'Teachers enter the profession to help children and young people and are not prepared to stand aside as their education is put at risk by short-sighted and ill-conceived cutbacks.'
Last updated: 11 December 2015