Keeping up with SRUCSA October 2021
October is a lovely autumnal month with lots to look forward to, like crunchy leaves and spooky Halloween activities. Our October was focused on training. We had some difficulties due to the EIS SRUC Staff strike, which resulted in having negative effects on the students. But we spent lots of time acquiring more knowledge through training.
EIS Strikes at SRUC
Staff at SRUC who are members of the EIS union, voted to carry out strike action. This was in protest of a lack of agreement over staff pay. This is now hopefully resolved. At the time, we decided to take a position of neutrality and act as an interpreter between SRUC Students and SRUC. We informed ourselves by meeting with senior staff and the unions leaders. We wrote a blog post and shared it with our students. As the month moved on, we heard from students that the strikes were causing disruption. So we put out a request for information to our students to find out what they had faced. Many students got back to us, and we compiled the information and arranged a meeting with SRUC management. Looking to encourage them to either resolve the issue. Before our meeting, EIS and SRUC had reached an understanding and the strike was paused. EIS members are voting on this understanding. We hope this agreement leads to fair pay and treatment of our lecturers by SRUC.
Training is a big part of what we do at SRUCSA. We encourage our officers to further their development, so they are ready to represent our students.
As part of our Gender Based Violence project, led by Cara, we invited in Rape Crisis Scotland. They delivered their First Responder Training; we learned a lot. Some SRUC staff also attended the training.
SRUCSA is always looking to find out how to represent learners at SRUC better, and we know there are some groups that we do better with. As part of Amy’s project to get SRUCSA to work better for Work Based Learner Students, we had staff from the National Society of Apprentices come and tell us how to engage well with apprentices. We cannot wait to put some of this in action.
Roz met some student’s unions officers from the other side of the wall (England and Wales) when she attended the NUS Student’s Unions training for Colleges across the UK. It was a good opportunity to share ideas with other officers.
One of the most important ways that we stay up to date with what is happening with SRUC student is through our network of Class reps. Our thanks go out to every student who puts themselves forward for the role. At our Student Panel meetings, we talk about what we have been up to, and we ask our Class Reps to bring us information from their classes. If you missed the last meeting, do not worry you can drop into any, the next Student Panel meetings will be.
- North Faculty 15th November
- Central Faculty Year 1/2 6th December
- Central Faculty Year 3/4 8th December
- South and West 9th December
Class Rep Training
We arranged training for class reps throughout October. Delivered by trainers from sparqs it gives class reps the information and tools to get the best out of their time and represent their classes well. If you are a class rep and missed the dates, you can complete the online module, and we will arrange further live training in the new year.
You are hopefully aware that SRUC have a service called MyVoice. On MyVoice you can send any feedback directly to SRUC and get a response. We think this is a great service, and this month we took part in a group that is looking to improve the service.
Black History Month
As part of Black History Month, SRUC hosted a talk from Wilfred Emanuel Jones (The Black Farmer). We found the talk super inspiring, and we will continue to work towards a future where the rural industry of Scotland is open as an option for people from all kinds of backgrounds. Read our Black Lives Matter policy.
As part of Roz’s manifesto, she has started working on her careers project collaboratively with SRUC. Roz is making progress on the careers event and will be sitting on the steering group for the project that will lead to a big event in the Spring.
SRUCSA have been planning their annual student feedback survey SPEAK WEEK! The survey gives students numerous opportunities to feedback on several aspects that effects their experience at SRUC. Students can fill in the survey more than once and provide negative or positive feedback.
The officers are looking forward to organising some on campus activity!