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Information for colleagues on recent industrial action

16 Mar 2020

A message from President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell

As colleagues return to work following the recently ended period of strike action, I know you will be thinking about our students, and about how best to ensure they are able to progress or complete their studies successfully.

At the same time, we find ourselves facing new challenges and considerable concerns with the ever-changing situation around Covid-19. We recognise that we have already introduced some significant changes which have been disruptive for our students. A great deal of contingency planning is taking place, and we will have to make additional changes to some of our ways of working in response to the outbreak, which is likely to cause further disruption, but prioritises the safety and wellbeing of our staff and students. With the current situation in mind, we are asking all colleagues to focus on teaching and student support for the next few weeks, up to the summer exam period. This is a short period in real terms, but exceptionally important for our students.

With regards to the strike action, we will be asking you to provide us with information about any disruption that may have affected your teaching sessions; what mitigation has been or is being put in place to support students and their learning; and how confident you are that their Intended Learning Outcomes will still be met. Staff must also let us know, via their line manager, the days they were on strike – by the reporting deadline of 25 March. There is more information on the Industrial Action StaffNet pages.

We know from previous periods of industrial action that colleagues find many different ways of working with their students to help and support them. While we recognise that UCU members are still engaged in ‘action short of a strike’ we very much hope that they will prioritise any lost learning outcomes for students, to enable them to continue successfully with their studies.

We are confident that you will be doing likewise this time, and thank you in advance for this. It will be hugely reassuring to students to know what is being put in place.

Nancy Rothwell

President and Vice-Chancellor

Further information: