‘Put pupils first – give teachers time to teach!’

Press Release

Put pupils first – give teachers time to teach!

The SSTA begins the first phase of its industrial action on Monday 24 October to bring about a reduction in teacher workload.

Seamus Searson, SSTA General Secretary said, “The title of our campaign is very important to our members. Our concern about the young people we teach is as important our concern for teaching and tackling the teacher workload burden.”

“SSTA members have been campaigning for a number of years to reduce teacher workload in all aspects of our work but especially in the senior phase. The SSTA has consistently pushed for a reduction in a system that all sides acknowledge is workload heavy in this current session. This is not just for ourselves but for the young people we teach. If we achieve our aim our young people will also benefit.”

“The SSTA welcomed the Deputy First Minister’s announcement that unit assessments are to be removed from National 5 in 2017-2018. Unfortunately, there has not been any progress on the situation in regard to National 4 and no reduction in workload pressure for both pupils and teachers in the current session.”

Euan Duncan, SSTA President said, “The SSTA’s view is that teacher workload has not, and is unlikely to be, significantly reduced in the current session, especially in the area of national qualifications. We therefore have no option but to move into industrial action to protect another cohort of young people and our members”.

Euan Duncan added “SSTA members care passionately about the young people they teach and getting the best qualifications. However, the pressure and stress suffered by both young people and teachers cannot be allowed to continue. We hope the Deputy First Minister can work with the SSTA to find a way forward and put measures in place to help the situation.”

Editor’s note

The Ballot for Industrial Action closed on Friday 30 September 2016 with a 91% vote in favour in taking industrial action. There was a 40.8% turnout in the Ballot.


Further information from

Seamus Searson
General Secretary

0131 313 7300


24 October 2016