Opinion Former Article

‘Nomadic' teachers subject to additional stress

Increasing numbers of teachers are being left without a permanent classroom base as a result of overcrowding, poor timetabling and deployment and insufficient or unsuitable specialist provision, the Annual Conference of the NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union, has heard today.

This nomadic existence is taking its toll on teachers mentally and physically.  Preparing the classroom in advance of their lessons is virtually impossible and carrying heavy books and equipment between classrooms is often required.

Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, said:

“The additional stress and pressure on teachers without a permanent classroom base is often underestimated and overlooked.

“Employers have a responsibility to assess the physical and mental risks of teachers who have this additional burden placed on them. To fail to do so leaves the employer vulnerable to personal injury claims”

ENDS

NASUWT Press Office contacts:
Ben Padley 07785 463 119
Lena Davies 07867 392 746
Sarah Cull 07920 711 069

Notes to editors
The NASUWT’s Annual Conference is being held at the ICC in Belfast from 19-21 April.

The full text of the motion is below:

TEACHERS WITHOUT A PERMANENT CLASSROOM BASE
Conference is concerned that the poor and overcrowded conditions of many school buildings are resulting in more teachers being without a permanent classroom base.

Conference is further concerned that unacceptable and inappropriate workload demands are being placed on these teachers, including:
(i)         significant expectations for manual handling;
(ii)         lack of planning, preparation and assessment time and
(iii)        requirements to travel between school sites at break and lunch times.

Conference calls on the National Executive to:
(a)        promote to employers the NASUWT guidance for teachers without a permanent classroom base, including those who move between school sites;
(b)        highlight and commend employers who employ best practice and
(c)        continue to take all appropriate action including industrial action to protect members where they are subject to unacceptable demands and/or health and safety risks.
(Executive)

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