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Nottingham College staff pass unanimous no-confidence vote in chief executive

STRIKING staff at Nottingham College have unanimously carried a vote of no confidence in the college’s chief executive John van de Laarschot and chair of governors Carole Thorogood at a meeting of University & College Union (UCU) members last night.

The motion said that their “continued mismanagement of the college” has “caused extreme harm and distress to staff and students.”

Staff have so far taken 15 days of strike action at the college over excessive workloads and broken promises and plan another 14 days of strike action in November.

The workers say they have been forced out on strike because of the college’s attempts to impose inferior contracts that cut holiday entitlement and pay. The union says that some staff have been bullied into signing new contracts.

It says that the college has now also back-tracked on a commitment to limit teaching hours to 24 a week while a new contract is negotiated.

The union’s head of further education Andrew Harden said: “This unanimous motion of no confidence shows the strength of feeling among our members that the management’s position is becoming increasing untenable.

“Industrial action is always a last resort for members, but the college’s refusal to negotiate in good faith has left staff with no alternative but to announce further action.”

The next wave of strikes starts on November 5.

A Nottingham College spokesperson said: “The college has been in continuous dialogue with UCU for some time in efforts to bridge the gap between the reported concerns of UCU’s members and the college’s offer.

“We’ve made a series of significant concessions specifically to address these concerns relating to trust, pay and workload. We have not reneged on any commitments made.”

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