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The IfL: why should we keep it in business?

Discussion in 'Further Education' started by Marley811, Feb 9, 2011.

  1. If I rejoin the teaching profession, then I will do so in Wales or Scotland where IfL regulations do not apply.
     
  2. Here is text of letter we intend to send to TES FE Focus tomorrow. If anyone would like to add their name / institution email joelpetrie@hotmail.com by 5.00 pm 07/06/11:
    The exposure by elected Advisory Council members of the IfL’s democratic dysfunction (“Union rejects fee hike U-turn and votes to boycott IfL”, 3 June) highlights the progressive isolation of the vocal minority of advocates for the IfL’s discredited, managerialist model of professionalism. The IfL’s modest electoral participation rates and invalid member surveys weaken the credibility of its associated satisfaction claims; and are increasingly undermined as thousands of time-poor lecturers contribute to petitions, social networks, CPD surveys, trade union conferences, and discussions in staff rooms: all expressing their rejection of a sectoral flat rate stealth tax and reflecting a clear refutation of non-developmental approaches to CPD.
    Opposition to the IfL fee is additionally symptomatic of a general malaise: the degradation of pay, conditions and pensions; the casualisation of part time and agency staff; issues of career development, pay differentials and promotion for women, Black, disabled and LGBT lecturers; the widening gulf between lecturers’ pay and executive salaries; and the glaring inconsistencies in the wider sector’s professionalism agenda with school teachers and HE lecturers, and indeed FE lecturers in Wales and Scotland, exempt from control by mandatory professional bodies.
    It is self evident that professional recognition remains remote and that the sector’s highly professional lecturers have not only been failed they have been subjected to additional burdens, and fundamentally the IfL has set back the debate on the validity of a professional body in the sector. Whatever the outcome of the current crisis of confidence any resolution must be genuinely informed, steered and led by practitioners.
    John Baxter (Hillsborough College Sheffield), Jeanne Bell (WEA tutor), Charlie Clark (NVQ Assessor), Maire Daley (Liverpool Community College), Susan Gillard (Buckinghamshire Adult Learning), Ian Hurd (UCU Chair, South Essex College), Nathalie Joel (ACL Tutor), Angie McConnell (Wigan and Leigh College, IfL Advisory Council), Jeremy Peake (Ely Community College, Community Education Tutor), Joel Petrie (Liverpool Community College), Eleanor Roscoe, Doug Rouxel (South Essex College), Kathryn Shaw (Cronton Sixth Form, Widnes), Barbara Spence (part time ESOL teacher), Colin Twinn, Sean Vernell (UCU National Executive Committee), Andy Weaver (South Essex College), Simon Westcott (Guildford College of Further and Higher Education), Rosemary Anne Williams (WEA Tutor), Laurence Wright (Truro College)…John Baxter (Hillsborough College Sheffield), Jeanne Bell (WEA tutor), James Broome (Derby College), Charlie Clark (NVQ Assessor), John H Collins (Cornwall College Camborne ), Maire Daley (Liverpool Community College), Susan Gillard (Buckinghamshire Adult Learning), Ian Hurd (UCU Chair, South Essex College), Nathalie Joel (ACL Tutor), Angie McConnell (Wigan and Leigh College, IfL Advisory Council), Jeremy Peake (Ely Community College, Community Education Tutor), Joel Petrie (Liverpool Community College), Eleanor Roscoe, Doug Rouxel (South Essex College), Emma Shaw (Medway Adult and Community Learning Service), Kathryn Shaw (Cronton Sixth Form, Widnes), Barbara Spence (part time ESOL teacher), Colin Twinn, Sean Vernell (UCU National Executive Committee), Andy Weaver (South Essex College), Simon Westcott (Guildford College of Further and Higher Education), Rosemary Anne Williams (WEA Tutor), Laurence Wright (Truro College)…
     
  3. I think it might be better if you wrote your letter in plain English and made it clear what you are for and against, as oppossed to writing a synopsis of a broad left composite motion.
    I would also suggest that it is not big, nor clever, to sign your own letter twice.

     
  4. welshskyline

    welshskyline New commenter

    This being sent out by IFL today, I understand......


     
  5. Which Trade Unions have agreed this?
    Because only a week ago the UCU congress agreed the complete opposite.
    Has someone sold us out?
     
  6. Agree multiple signature daft ;) but was only a draft shirt&tie. The letter composed by several people, via email & social networks - always a tricky affair. Much of it also cut / paste from recent IfL related union motions - so I guess you'd object to use of language in that context too. Not sure that is is broad left strictly - for instance not from union, from general disgruntled ifl members. I alos think the clear point is that practioners should decide on these issues rather than having them dictated, no?
     
  7. Reminds me of the time we tried to agree somewhere to go one Christmas. Ended up somewhere no one wanted to go to.
    I think you might find the TES editor objecting to that more than me.
    Come on, I recognise more than your own name from the broad left on that list.
    Not sure you made that point as clearly as you might have. But the intriguing question now is; who is doing the dictating?
     
  8. I think I get it now. I think what has happened is that UCU has negotiated the best deal it thinks it can acheive.
    But it intends to ballot its members on whether or not to accept the deal. See;
    http://www.ucu.org.uk/index.cfm?articleid=5586
    I know which way I'll vote, the same way as everyone else in my staffroom.

     
  9. For what its worth have just posted this:

    The IfL deal and where next?
    Last post 08/06/11 at 09:39 by 1961JohnG, 0 replies
     
  10. @shirtandtie. Think clear that IfL leadership is doing the dictating. Surveys of Natfhe members were in favour of a prof body. One established it rejected calls from voluntary membership for representaitve democratic stuctures. Also worth noting that we collectively missed a massive trick - where were the voices raised in protest when New Labour introduced mandatory membership, making it clear that it would ultimately be funded via membership? Once mandatory IfL eventually adopted a "democratic" veneer but essentially it was created to be structurally resiliant to any criticism from within (elected "Advisory" Council members starting to come forward confirming this) or from outside (until very recently members not even able to contact elected rep direct). The IfL does not publish minutes; it disenfrishes members in key elections (Chair, President); and it lacks transparency (try finding out from IfL website the role of its President for instance).
    Don't you think that the body that comes out of negotiations best is UCU re not "dictating" - the only one putting the deal to membership in formal ballot. Members will decide (I suspect reject deal) then we know where we're up to. IfL's democratic deficit totally contracts with UCU's position in this respect.
    Re the letter - yes broad left people on there from UCU, but if you are a UCU member / activist you won't recognise al names - several not unionised but furious about this issue. Find that intriguing in and of itself.
     
  11. Agreed. I know of many, many angry non-Union members. This is precisely WHY I will always be a member of a Union in any workplace I work in.
    Perhaps even MORE important for a teacher... I for one would not step foot in a classroom without being a Union member... to protect myself more than anything.
     
  12. Its more clear now.
    Yes, but I do detect some ambivilance in their position, where is the NEC recommendation? And anyway just about any organisation looks good when compared to the IfL.
    Yes it is.
    One of my frustrations is that UCU have perhaps been slow to capitalise on a potential easy win. Although to be fair to you Indy you have pushed the boat out on that one and as you say broadened the involvement.
    I'm old-skool TU and think that if you want to create support at rank and file level than you should fight for the little things first, even trivial things like a new kettle in the staff room.
    Which is why I get frustrated with UCU because in the grand scheme of things this problem with IfL is trivial. Again you have pointed this out, but so closely linking the issues into a 'counter-hegemony' is what concerns me.
    Lets just win this fight first.
    It is certain that UCU members will reject the proposal. What is important is that they do this with a more convincing turnout than has been the case in other more recent ballots.

     
  13. I never understood why members wanted a professional body. I didn't.
    My voice was raised in protest and has been from the day I was legally forced to join a body which I had never asked for.
    It is curious you find it intriguing that non-union individuals, almost none of whom ever wanted a professional body, are furious. They might feel, I should imagine, that it was the unions' endless banging on about the necessity for such a body that helped bring about the mess that we are now in.

     
  14. I am really disgusted, I applied to the IFL in August for my QTLS status and heard nothing. The deadline was 31st October so I contacted them to confirm they were processing my application. I was then told that because I hadn't renewed my membership (on my unions advice) I could not gain QTLS. They had not even bothered to tell me, this is like a ransom and surely should not be allowed? I need QTLS to enroll in my Masters degree which starts shortly.
     
  15. As a new FE tutor, it was a requirement of our ITT to become members of the IfL. If you didn't show proof of your membership then your PGCE/Cert. Ed/DTLLs was not completed, therefore you received a FAIL.
    I am only a part time volunteer tutor, giving back a little in repayment for the support given to me due to disability.
    I <u>had</u> to pay out of my own pocket for my qualifications; but I accepted this as I do receive a disability benefit from the state.
    As much as I find the IfL a great resource for interaction with other tutors and reflect, I am very upset with having to pay for membership now. Up to this year my membership was free as I had no earned income but this year I am expected to pay - even if it is a reduced rate.
    Like the previous poster I have yet to gain my QTLS so unable to withdraw my membership. If I ever manage to obtain QTLS (its very difficult to get a sponser when you are 'only' a volunteer, actually I can't believe how hard it is to find a volunteer position!) I'm sure there are other sites out there that can offer just as much as IfL WITHOUT the membership fee.
     
  16. The IFL have proved incompetent. I won&rsquo;t every pay them a penny. It is clear that some people on the forum have been hoodwinked into joining.
     
  17. cariadwch

    cariadwch Established commenter

    This one for a start:
    http://www.originalmmc.com/
     
  18. Don't understand why you felt the need to take the 'mick'. A rather childish remark to a perfectly valid comment which others have expressed before me.
     

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