Next year could see the rise of a new National Education Union (NEU) bringing together the two largest education unions. The NUT and ATL have recently held a special conference at which delegates welcomed the progress made in negotiations on forming a new union.
The conferences endorsed the rules of the new union, to be called the National Education Union. This decision will now be put to the members of both unions for approval in ballots to be held in the spring term.
The new union would have almost half a million members and would be a powerful force in education and the trade union movement. The government and employers would need to take such an organisation seriously and would not be able to deploy the policy of divide and rule.
The new organisation would be more economical to run and would target members' subscriptions on matters important to teachers and education rather than on competitive recruitment between the unions