HC Deb 20 November 1987 vol 122 cc675-6W
Mr. Cartwright

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) whether he intends to intervene in the current lecturers' pay dispute; and if he will make a statement;

(2) what plans he has to seek to raise the morale of lecturers in further education colleges in order better to meet the needs of industry and commerce.

Mrs. Rumbold

The Secretary of State has no plans to intervene in the current further education lecturers' pay dispute. The Teachers' Pay and Conditions Act 1987 abolished the Burnham (FE) committee, and both the pay and conditions of service of further education lecturers are now dealt with in the National Joint Council for Lecturers in Further Education in England and Wales, on which the Department of Education and Science has only observer status. Many further education lecturers are now benefiting substantially from a pay restructuring agreed as part of the 1985 settlement. The local authority employers have made a pay offer worth 9.3 per cent. in a full year in return for which they are seeking agreement on more cost-effective working arrangements, the need for which was accepted by the lecturers in the context of the 1985 settlement, but on which no progress has so far been made. It is regrettable that the National Association of Teachers in Further and Higher Education is nevertheless continuing to encourage its members to take industrial action damaging to the interests of students. I hope that a settlement will be reached soon, in the best interests of the students and of industry and commerce as well as the lecturers themselves.