Thank you for agreeing to be an NUT learning rep. As an NUT learning rep you play a vital role in the largest teachers’ union and are key to its continued success.
The role of an NUT rep is enormously rewarding, and many of the skills you develop in the role are transferable to your professional life. The role is flexible – you decide how much time you put in.
Any contribution towards building your union is greatly appreciated.
This guide sets out some of the activities an NUT learning rep can get involved in. It may be that you undertake some but not all of the elements discussed in this guide.
Remember that the strength of the Union is based upon members participating and making their voices heard. By acting together at work we can make a difference to the issues that are of importance to teachers.
If at any time you think that you would like some advice, assistance or resources to help you in your role then you can visit the union’s website learning-reps or contact your local association/division secretary.
If you are a new rep or have not yet attended training you should book yourself a place on a NUT Learning Reps Course here.
So, have a look at this introductory guide. It should help you get started with the basics of the role and point you in the right direction for help and support.
Together we can make a difference!
As an NUT learning rep you have certain rights assigned to your role under employment law. You are entitled to:
Your association/division secretary can give you more details about how to implement these rights in your workplace.
The role of an NUT learning rep is both exciting and rewarding. By starting with the basics and then moving on in the role at your own pace you can build your confidence and skill level as you go. Once you have been elected there are several preliminary tasks you need to undertake, which are listed below:
Some of the tasks an NUT learning rep could carry out are explained below:
Supporting members in your school
Teaching Schools and School Direct
No NUT rep in your workplace?
Every workplace needs a strong union team!
Talking to members about learning and training issues is an important part of being an NUT learning rep. Your job is to listen to members and assess their learning, training and CPD needs. This may be carried out through conducting a learning needs survey amongst members in your workplace or holding an NUT group meeting. You should then, in discussion with members, formulate solutions that may involve discussion with the senior leadership, or the training manager, in your workplace or may be found elsewhere.
There are many ways in which to communicate with members. The form of communication you adopt will depend on the specific context but also the aim of your communication.
You should liaise with the NUT workplace rep to obtain the email addresses of all members in the workplace as this is probably one of the most efficient ways of communicating with them, especially in larger workplaces or those occupying more than one site.
Holding workplace meetings
Meetings are important; they get members involved and facilitate discussion.
As the NUT learning rep you may wish to organise workplace meetings to discuss current educational and pedagogical issues of relevance and/or concern. Members should be aware that union meetings in your workplace can be about educational issues as well as pay and conditions and campaigning priorities.
Meetings need not be formal and can be more of a discussion between colleagues on issues of interest. They should ideally be held once a term.
When organising a meeting you should remember to:
Learning reps section of the NUT noticeboard
Your workplace should have an NUT noticeboard which is managed by the workplace rep.
As the NUT learning rep you should negotiate with the workplace rep and any other relevant colleagues a board space for placing NUT learning and CPD materials, as well as your learning newsletter and any other relevant materials produced by the NUT, yourself or other NUT members in your workplace.
You can download an NUT learning rep banner for the noticeboard from the website here.
The NUT is the largest teachers’ union due to the recruitment work undertaken by our reps. It is important that you liaise with the workplace rep to ensure that you know who is and isn’t a union member in your workplace.
Remember that recruitment is a year round activity. In Teaching Schools and where School Direct trainees are recruited they may join the school at different times during the year. When student teachers join your workplace you should introduce yourself as the NUT learning rep and tell them about the CPD opportunities offered by the NUT for students and NQTs. You should try to build a rapport with them and highlight the work the NUT does. Ask them to join if they are not already members. Go here for up to date details of the Union’s joining offers.
Getting members involved
As well as recruiting new members it would also be useful for yourself and the workplace rep to identify other roles in your workplace which members could undertake.
Identifying a number of people willing to do a little will relieve you of workload and create a collective identity.
Getting people active in the union is easier if they see some relevance to that activity. Below are some tips on getting members more involved:
Below are some tips on meeting with management:
As an NUT learning rep you are already fulfilling one of the most important roles in the Union. But you may want to extend your activity and involvement beyond your workplace, and encourage members to do the same.
If you feel you want to increase your involvement there are plenty of ways to do this:
Your key point of contact is your association/division secretary. If you do not already have their contact details please visit here where you will find them. They have a wealth of knowledge and expertise you can tap into – never be afraid to get in touch. It is only by understanding the real issues and concerns of union members that the NUT can make a positive impact on the working lives of teachers.
Thank you again for taking on this role – together we can make a difference!