State of Higher Education – please read the news below – all of them published just last week.
2. Swansea University (problematic Kuwait deal) https://www.walesonline.co.uk/
4. De Montfort University (conflict of interest; SMT resignations) https://ucudemontfort.
At The University of Birmingham we are (still) dealing with similar issues:
- pay and pay inequality (year-on-year, staff’s pay has been cut in real terms, whilst management have given themselves pay rises),
- governance (the VC sits on his own remuneration committee and is now the highest paid Vice Chancellor in the country; support staff are not allowed to sit on University Senate and to be elected or to vote for candidates; council decisions are being made behind closed doors),
- conflict of interest (Eastwood is a director of INTO, a private company that recruits international students for Higher Education institutions),
- casualisation (70% of teaching staff are on casualised contracts at UoB),
- the Dubai campus was set up without consultation with the unions, and our concerns have not been addressed – staff and students are at significant risk as a result,
- the joint unions’ demands have been ignored,
- the outsourcing of workers to a new subsidiary company (the Edgbaston Park Hotel) and management’s refusal to recognise unions for new staff,
- the new ‘Green Heart’ (campus regeneration) which cost millions of pounds,
- the University’s refusal to seek Living Wage Accreditation,
- the University’s attempts to build even more student accommodation (but rejected by Council as an ‘abhorrent request’),
- the University’s buying of a public swimming pool and fitness centre, with the intention to turn it into a gym (we have not heard any news about it being opened) – while the subscriptions for the new sports centre on campus have gone up considerably, to the point where staff cannot afford to exercise.
And the list goes on and on …
Want to make a difference on campus? Join the UNISON committee by running for a role at our AGM on the 13th of February!