NQTs THEIR REASONS FOR JOINING, OR NOT, A TEACHERS ORGANISATION

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1 NQTs THEIR REASONS FOR JOINING, OR NOT, A TEACHERS ORGANISATION RESEARCH CARRIED OUT BY THE LABOUR RESEARCH DEPARTMENT FOR THE NUT 2004/05

2 Executive Summary The NUT is the most common choice of union for NQTs, accounting for 48.2% of the paying members in this survey, compared with 38.8% for the NASUWT and 12.5% for the ATL The NUT is the most evident union in more than half (53.9%) of the schools where there is more than one union with members (compared with 40.3% for the next highest, the NASUWT) The most common mechanism through which NQTs become paying union members is by transferring their student membership, and this was more important for NUT members than for NASUWT or ATL members Joining through a colleague or union rep at the school was a relatively less used mechanism for the NUT than for the NASUWT and ATL but union contact at college/university was more important for NUT joiners The most commonly cited influence on choice of union is knowing someone else who is a member, but the most decisive influence is having a better impression from other teachers. This was more true for NUT joiners than those who joined the other unions analysed Joining their union because they felt they would get more personal support was the third most cited key factor for NUT joiners, and was more decisive for them than for members of the other unions analysed The thought that their chosen union would be less militant was the decisive factor for almost a quarter of ATL joiners All respondents displayed high levels of satisfaction with most union benefits and services, and union members satisfaction rates were higher than those who had only been a member under a free student membership scheme The lowest satisfaction rates (thought they were still positive) from NUT members were in relation to its financial benefits and support/advice from officials from outside the school All unions achieved high levels of agreement with their NQT members on their positions/policies on key issues. The NUT and NASUWT had similar agreement rates on workforce remodelling, and both were higher than ATL s; the NUT had higher agreement rates than the others for its position on pay and career progression NQTs with caring commitments and those who work part time are less likely be to union members than others but gender does not appear to be a factor The two most common factors, and the two most decisive, which stop NQTs from becoming paying union members are not wanting to pay the subscriptions and being confused by the preponderance of teacher unions. Close behind those two factors are that no-one has asked them and that not many teachers that I know/at my school are members NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS 2 23 March 2006

3 Introduction The Aim of the Project In 2004, the NUT commissioned the Labour Research Department to undertake market research to ascertain about newly qualified teachers (NQTs) in the NUT and in other teaching organisations: the factors influencing their decision to join, or not to join, a teacher trade union; the factors influencing their choice of union; their perceptions about NUT policies, services and benefits. The NUT wished to survey a sample which would include NQTs who are NUT members, NQTs who are members of other teacher organisations and non-unionised NQTs. Methodology The first part of the work involved compiling a list of NQTs which included the above three target groups, to whom a postal questionnaire was to be sent. The LRD proposed to use lists of NQTs provided to local NUT Divisions under Burgundy Book arrangements aimed at fostering good industrial relations. Appendix III Para 7(b) of this recommends that local agreements on facilities for recognised teachers organisations should include: the provision of lists of newly appointed teachers in the authority s area. Both NUT HQ and LRD wrote to and ed Divisional Secretaries to obtain these lists, and in the event received more than was actually necessary to create a sufficiently large pool of NQT names and addresses (some home addresses and some school addresses) to conduct the survey. Only a small number of Divisions responded that they could not obtain lists from their local authority. Meanwhile, LRD drew up a draft questionnaire for a pilot survey carried out among NQTs in Cambridgeshire. This was successfully carried out, with only minor tweaking required for the questionnaire before it went out to the complete sample. The response rate indicated that we should be easily able to achieve our target of 1,000 response by sending out just under 4,000 questionnaires. The pilot, and the full survey, involved the sending out of a notice letter to each target NQT, a questionnaire and then a reminder letter with a second questionnaire. A total of 1,493 valid and completed questionnaires were returned by the time the data was to be input and analysed (June 2005). That represented a response rate of 37.3%, exceeding expectations. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS 3 23 March 2006

4 The Respondents and Unions at their Schools The Respondents A total of 1,493 NQTs responded to the survey, of whom 1,415 (95.2%) were either already paying union members or were planning to be once their free membership period came to an end. Overall 23.1% of the NQTs were male and 76.9% were female, and just over half were aged under 26. Table 1: Proportion of NQTs responding in each age band (%) Under Over Ninety-two per cent of all the NQTs described their ethnic group as white and 8% in one of five given ethnic minority groupings. Table 2: Ethnic group of NQTs responding (%) White Mixed Black or Black British Asian or Asian British Chinese Fewer than one in five (19.8%) NQTs responding to the survey had commitments to caring for children, elderly relatives or disabled dependents, and 0.9% described themselves as disabled. The vast majority (95.9%)of NQTs worked full time, with 2.8% working 0.6 and over and 1.3% working less than 0.6. But more than one in five (20.9%) were on fixed-term contracts while just 77.5% were on a permanent contract and 1.6% worked on supply. The majority (59%) worked in secondary schools, including high schools, sixth-form colleges an special secondaries; 38% worked in primaries, including nursery and first schools and special primaries; and 3% worked in middle schools. NQTs were asked whether they read, from time to time, various education supplements in national newspapers. The results were as follows: Times Educational Supplement 83.4% Times Education Section 21.3% Guardian Education 20.3% The Independent s Education Supplement 7.4% The Daily Telegraph Parents and Education Section 5.0% Asked if they ever received information on teachers unions in careers information, just 1.3% of all the NQTs said they did so from Target Teaching and only 0.9% did so from Real World. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS 4 23 March 2006

5 Comparison Across Unions Of the1,415 NQTs who were paying union members(or about to be), almost half had chosen the NUT. Table 3: Respondents who were paying union members, split by union % (number) NUT NASUWT ATL PAT UCAC 48.2 (678) 38.8 (546) 12.5 (176) 0.4 (5) 0.2 (3) Because of the unreliably small numbers of paying PAT and UCAC members in the survey, any analysis in this report split by union only looks at the other three unions. Looking at the respondents who were paying members of the three largest unions, it would seem that women are more likely to join the ATL or the NUT than the NASUWT. Table 4: Women as proportion of members, split by union (%) NUT NASUWT ATL Younger NQTs were slightly more likely to join the NUT than the other two unions. 53.7% of its members were aged under 26 compared to 50.1% of NASUWT members and 47.7% of ATL members. And those from ethnic minorities were also slightly more likely to join the NUT, as 9.3% of paying NUT members, 6.1% of NASUWT members and 7.6% of ATL members were from ethnic minorities. Members of the different unions had pretty similar reading habits, except that ATL members were much more likely than the others to read the Independent and Daily Telegraph education supplements. Table 5: Reading habits of paying members, split by union (% who said yes) NUT NASUWT ATL Times Educational Supplement Times Education Section Guardian Education The Independent s Education Supplement The Daily Telegraph Parents and Education Section NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS 5 23 March 2006

6 Unions at the School The NQTs were asked if any teachers at their school were members of the five teacher unions covered in the questionnaire. Table 6: Which teacher unions have members at your school % and (number) NUT NASUWT ATL PAT UCAC 92.6 (1,383) 80.7 (1,205) 43.0 (642) 4.4 (66) 0.7 (10) Of the five, the NUT was the most likely to have members in the respondents schools. A large majority, 92.6%, said some teachers at their school were NUT members. In second place came the NASUWT, which had members in 80.7% of schools. Those who had said that more than one teacher union had members in the school were asked which was the most evident one at their school. (81.4% of respondents answered this question). Table 7: Which union is most evident at your school? (%) Overall Primary Secondary NUT NASUWT ATL UCAC More than half (53.9%) said the NUT was the most evident union in their school, while in second place was the NASUWT, which was the most evident union in 40.3% of schools. None of the respondents answered PAT. This appears to confirm a picture that is probably already assumed that the NUT enjoys a disproportionate dominance in terms of its evidence in schools. While the NUT had a 9.4 percentage point advantage over the NASUWT in terms of membership in the survey, it had an 11.1 percentage point lead in terms of being more evident in schools. In other words, NASUWT s membership is concentrated in certain schools. Similarly the ATL accounted for 12.5% of the respondents but was the most evident in only 5.5%, indicating that its members tend to be concentrated in certain schools. However, when the figures are broken down by primary and schools, it is clear that the NUT s dominance is limited to primary schools, where more than two thirds (69.5%) of respondents said this was the most evident union. In secondary schools, the NASUWT was the dominant union overall. (However, these responses do not include schools where only one union was present.) NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS 6 23 March 2006

7 Paying Union Members Mechanism for Becoming a Member The questionnaire asked about the one main mechanism through which members had become paying members and found that the most common way was through transferring from their student membership to full membership. Table 8: Mechanism for becoming paying member (%), split by union NUT NASUWT ATL All members Transferring from student membership Union contact at college/university College/union rep at school Union stall at event Mailed approach from union Through union website Friend/relative outside school Phone call from union Union rep outside school Comparing the three major unions (ATL, NASUWT, NUT), transferring from student membership was the most common mechanism for all three, but was more important for the NUT than for the others, especially the ATL. Union contacts at college or university were more important for the NUT than for the other two, but colleagues/union reps at the school were less important for the NUT than for the other two, particularly the NASUWT. Joining through the union website had a low ranking for the NUT and NASUWT, but was the fourth key mechanism for the ATL. Joining through a friend or relative outside school was also a lower-ranked mechanism for the NUT as compared with the others. The NUT recruited a higher proportion than the other two through a mailed approach from the union, while the NASUWT recruited a higher proportion of its NQTs through a phone call from the union. (NB It should be remembered that these are rankings, so if one mechanism scores highly, others will automatically score less highly.) The answers for all paying members were also analysed by gender, but there was very little difference in the mechanisms through which men and women joined their union as a paying member. The two exceptions were that men were more likely than women to join through a union contact at their college/university, and women were more likely than men to join via a mailed approach from the union. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS 7 23 March 2006

8 Influences on Choice of Union The questionnaire presented a list of 19 factors which might have influenced paying members in their choice of union. NQTs were first asked to tick any factor which had influenced them and then to single out the most important influence on their choice of union. Table 9: Factors which influenced my choice of union Was an influence % (number) Was the most important influence % I knew someone else who is member 44.9 (635) 10.6 One most evident at my school 36.8 (521) 15.8 Better impression from other teachers 30.7 (435) 19.0 More impressed with recruitment materials/message 25.3 (358) 7.9 More impressed with printed materials 17.5 (247) 3.2 Personal support 17.3 (245) 9.9 Less militant 14.6 (206) 7.6 Better impression from media 13.1 (186) 1.3 Only one to approach me 11.4 (161) 3.5 Thought it would be cheaper 8.2 (116) 4.5 Policy on pay and career progression 7.5 (106) 3.1 Policy on workforce re-modelling 7.4 (105) 2.1 Policy on classroom behaviour 7.1 (101) 0.9 The most appropriate to my job 7.1 (100) 3.9 My parent was a member 6.9 (98) 2.6 Individual benefits 5.2 (73) 1.0 More impressed with website 4.7 (67) 0.6 More militant 4.7 (67) 2.2 Policy on educational trips 3.5 (50) 0.3 When asked to tick all factors which influenced this choice, the most commonly ticked factor was I knew someone else (or several people) who is/was a member. The second most important influence was that their union is the one most evident at my school, indicating the importance of a critical mass of members at individual schools. Third came I had a better impression of that union from what I had heard from other teachers, while in fourth place was I was more impressed with that union s recruitment materials/message. Low on the list of influences were unions individual benefits (eg financial services), cited by only 4.7% as being of any influence, their websites (4.7%), their policy on educational trips (3.5%) and prospective members desire for a more militant union (4.7%). However, 14.6% were interested in joining a less militant union: this was the seventh most commonly cited influence and the sixth most common key influence on choice of union. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS 8 23 March 2006

9 When asked about the single most important influence the same top three came up, but in a different order. Clearly out in front was having a better impression from other teachers, followed by it being the one most evident at the school. Knowing someone else came only third. And more personal support jumped to fourth spot when key reasons only were considered. Table 10: Factors which influenced choice of union, split by union (asked to tick any) NUT NASUWT ATL I knew someone else who is member One most evident at my school Better impression from other teachers More impressed with recruitment materials/message Personal support Better impression from media More impressed with printed materials Only one to approach me Policy on pay and career progression Policy on workforce re-modelling More militant The most appropriate to my job Policy on classroom behaviour My parent was a member More impressed with website Thought it would be cheaper Individual benefits Policy on educational trips Less militant Comparing the answers for members of the three largest unions, the most commonly cited reason, knowing someone else who is a member, is the same for all three, and the percentages do not vary widely between the NUT, the NASUWT and the ATL. The most cited influence for the NUT members is being the one most evident at my school which, not surprisingly, is higher than for members of the other two unions. And in NUT members third place was that they had a better impression of it from other teachers. Again this played slightly better for the NUT than for the others. Another influence which was more common among NUT members than the others was anticipating more personal support. This is very positive as it was the decisive factor for one in 10 union members overall to pick their union (see table 10). And, perhaps surprisingly, NUT members were significantly more likely than the others to have been influenced by the impression they had from the media. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS 9 23 March 2006

10 However, the NUT should be aware that it is less likely than the others to be picked out for its recruitment materials/message, cited by 21.6% compared with 28.1% of NASUWT members and 33.9% of ATL members. This is quite important as it is a key factor influencing potential members overall. Printed materials also were more influential for the NASUWT and ATL. Perceptions of militancy are important to potential members, and the idea that a union is less militant than the others is important overall (see above). The NUT could lose out here, as just 2.4% were influenced by the thought that it was less militant than the others, compared with 20.4% for the NASUWT and 42.7% for ATL. And the perception of the cost of joining the union could also be a problem for the NUT. While of 4.7% of NUT members were influenced by the thought that it would be cheaper, 8.6% of NASUWT members said that as did 21.1% of ATL members. Members of the NUT were slightly more influenced than the others by the belief that their union was the most appropriate to their job (number seven in the list of influences overall) and by the fact that it was the only one to approach them (number nine overall). Looking at the single most important influence on members of the different unions, it is clear that having a better impression from other teachers ranked higher for NUT members than the others. For the other two unions it was only the second most important influence. Table 11: Most important influence on choice of union split by union (in order of NUT members preferences) NUT NASUWT ATL I knew someone else who is member One most evident at my school Better impression from other teachers More impressed with recruitment materials/message Personal support Better impression from media More impressed with printed materials Only one to approach me Policy on pay and career progression Policy on workforce re-modelling More militant The most appropriate to my job Policy on classroom behaviour My parent was a member More impressed with website Thought it would be cheaper Individual benefits Policy on educational trips Less militant NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS March 2006

11 The second most important reason for NUT respondents, at 17.0%, was that it was the one most evident at their school. The third most common key reason for NUT members to choose that union is the thought that they would get more personal support at school from that union, singled out by 12.6% of NUT members. This is very important, as it was ranked lower as the decisive influence by NASUWT members and ATL members. Recruitment materials/message came lower down the rankings for NUT members than for the others, whereas the impression the NQTs had had from the media was higher up the rankings for NUT members. From the NUT s point of view the fact that potential members see it as providing more personal support is very important, at number three in the list and way ahead of the other unions. It is also important as it came in at number four for the most important influence on all members choice of union. It will be seen later on that members actual experience of personal support provided by reps at the school and officials outside the school is positive (where they have had experience of it) and that the NUT and NASUWT members who higher levels of satisfaction than the ATL members. This need for, and satisfaction with, personal support is perhaps something that could the NUT could exploit in recruitment literature and campaigning. Another factor separating the NUT from the other unions was its policy on pay and career progression, which came much higher up the league table for those NUT members than those of the other unions. But factors which were ranked lower by NUT members than others included the thought it would be a cheaper union and the thought that it would be less militant, which was the key factor for only 0.4% who chose the NUT, but a huge 11% of those who chose the NASUWT and a whopping 22.9% of those who chose ATL. This is an important point for the NUT as it confirms that there is a large slab of potential union membership who it can probably not win without compromising its positions. The responses on the most important influence on members choice of union was also analysed by gender, but few major differences were found. Women were more likely than men to say the main factor was that it was the most evident union at their school and that they had a better impression of that union from other teachers. Women were less likely than men to single out the union being either less militant or more militant. The key influence responses were also analysed by whether the NQT worked in a primary or secondary school. The big difference here was that primary school NQTs were almost twice as likely as those from secondary schools to say the most important factor determining their choice of union was knowing someone else who was a member (14.3% compared with 7.6%). Although there were more responses from secondary schools, only 53 of them cited this compared with 63 of primary school respondents. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS March 2006

12 Benefits and Services Union members indicated a high level of satisfaction with the printed materials provided by their union for student teachers and for NQTs and with the union s members magazine. For the other benefits and services asked about websites, financial benefits, legal services and personal support from union reps and officials those who expressed an interest were on balance certainly satisfied, but there was much less awareness of or interest in, these benefits and services. In terms of their attitude to the unions websites, this seems to confirm other work carried out for the NUT by the Labour Research Department that indicated that teachers are not major union website users. They also do not seem to have made much use of the financial benefits available. It is perhaps less surprising that between 30% and 45% have not really experienced their union s legal services or the support offered by union reps/officials, as they have been in teaching for a short time. To summarise the comparative results for the three main unions, this report presents the findings on this in terms of a net satisfaction figure. This takes the percentage of respondents who were very or quite satisfied with their union s benefits and services and subtracts the percentage who were very or quite dissatisfied. Those who said not really noticed/not relevant to me are left out and displayed in a separate column. Table 12: Satisfaction with benefits/services split by union (%) Benefit/service NUT NASUWT ATL Printed materials for student teachers Net satisfaction Not noticed/ relevant Net satisfaction Not noticed/ relevant Net satisfaction Not noticed/ relevant Printed materials for NQTs Members magazine Union s website Financial benefits Legal services Support/advice from reps at school Support/advice from officials The responses on these questions are fairly similar across the unions, with NUT members expressing very slightly less net satisfaction than the others with their union s materials for NQTs and members magazine and slightly more satisfaction with their union s website and legal services. NUT members were substantially more satisfied with their financial benefits. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS March 2006

13 NUT and NASUWT members were both more satisfied with the support/advice they received from reps at their school than ATL members, and also expressed much interest/awareness in this union service. They were also more satisfied with, and aware of, the support/advice from officials outside the school, although not to quite such a marked degree. Union Policies The union members overall had very high levels of agreement with their union s positions/policies on key issues for teachers. The highest level of agreement was on teachers pay and progression, where 57.3% of all union members agreed and another 16.0% agreed strongly with their union s position on this topic. This was also the topic which they knew most about, with only one in four responding don t know/not really relevant to me. The lowest level of agreement was on their union s position on taking strike action, where fewer than half (48.3%) either agreed or agreed strongly with their union and 11.7% disagreed or disagreed strongly. To summarise the comparative results for the three main unions, this report presents the findings on this in terms of a net agreement figure. This takes the percentage of respondents who agreed or agreed strongly with their union s policy on the topic and subtracts the percentage who disagreed or disagreed strongly. Those who said don t know/not really relevant to me are left out and presented in a separate column. Table 13: Agreement with union s policies, split by union (%) Policy NUT NASUWT ATL Net agreement Don t know/not relevant Net agreement Don t know/not relevant Net agreement Don t know/not relevant Workforce remodelling Teachers pay and progression Classroom behaviour Educational trips Taking strike action Dealing with the government Responding to issues on TV/in media On workforce remodelling, the NUT and NASUWT had similar agreement ratings from their members and both were higher than for the ATL. However, this was largely to do with a much higher proportion of ATL members answering don t know/not really relevant to me response from. The NUT can take satisfaction from having higher agreement rates for its policies on teacher s pay and career progression than the other two, although its advantage is particularly marked when compared with the ATL. And it has a much smaller proportion of members saying they don t know or it s not relevant. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS March 2006

14 The NUT s policy on educational trips gains more agreement from members than the NASUWT s (though about the same as the ATL s). The NUT also does very slightly better than the NASUWT with its policies on taking strike action but neither can match up to the agreement rate for the ATL on this topic. There is nothing to chose between the NUT and the NASUWT on their policies on dealing with the government and responding to issues in the media, though both gain more agreement from their members than the ATL does. Again ATL members are more likely to say they don t know about these two issues or that they are not really relevant to them. Overall, for every policy listed, ATL members are always less likely than members of the other two unions to know about their union s policy or find it relevant, with the exception of taking strike action, where NASUWT members are less knowledgeable/interested. The responses on agreement with union policies was also analysed by the type of school respondents worked at and by gender. Table 14: Agreement with unions policies, split by primary and secondary teachers (%) Net agreement Primary Don t know/ not relevant Net agreement Secondary Don t know/ not relevant Workforce remodelling Teachers pay and progression Classroom behaviour Educational trips Taking strike action Dealing with the government Responding to issues on TV/in media On the whole, respondents from secondary schools were more in agreement than those from primaries with their unions policies, except on workforce remodelling and educational trips. Table 15: Agreement with unions policies, split by gender (%) Net agreement Men Don t know/ not relevant Net agreement Women Don t know/ not relevant Workforce remodelling Teachers pay and progression Classroom behaviour Educational trips Taking strike action Dealing with the government Responding to issues on TV/in media NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS March 2006

15 On the whole, men were more in agreement with their union s policies than women, except in the areas of educational trips and taking strike action. In every case, women overall were less certain of their position, with higher percentages ticking don t know/not really relevant to me. Non-Members Just 71 (4.8%) of the 1,493 respondents were not paying union members (or about to be), of whom some had taken up the offer of free union membership while a student. 27 (38.0%) non-paying members had been student members of the NUT, 24 (33.8%) of the NASUWT, 19 (26.8%) of the ATL, 4 (5.6%) of the PAT and 1 (1.4%) of UCAC. This number totals more than 71 (the number of respondents who were not paying members) as some had free membership of more than one union. Women formed 77.1% of non members, compared with 76.9% of union members, indicating that an NQT s gender is not a factor which affects their propensity to join a teaching union. The age profile of non members shows a slightly higher proportion of older members than among the union members (and correspondingly a smaller proportion of younger members). However, the number of non-members being analysed is too small to make hard and fast conclusions on this. Table 16: Proportion of non-members in each age band compared with paying members (%) Paying members Non-members Under Over The proportion of NQTs from ethnic minorities was higher among non-members (12.9%) than among members (7.8%), indicating that they might be less likely than white NQTs for join unions. However, the absolute numbers of non-members responding to the survey are a too small for hard and fast conclusions. The proportion of non members who have caring commitments (eg for child, elder or disabled care), at 24.3% is higher than among union members (19.6%). NQTs who work part time appear less likely to join a teaching union as there is a higher proportion of them among the non members. Table 17: Proportion of NQTs who work full or part time, split by whether paying members (%) Paying members Non-members Full time and over Less than NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS March 2006

16 And non members were less likely to read all the listed newspapers education supplements than paying members, except for one. This is Guardian Education, which they were more likely to read than the Times Education Section, unlike paying members. Table 18: Reading habits of NQTs, split by whether union member (%) Paying members Non-members Times Educational Supplement Times Education Section Guardian Education The Independent s Education Supplement The Daily Telegraph Parents and Education Section These non-members were asked about their satisfaction with the benefits and services provided by their union during their period of free membership. As in other sections, a net satisfaction figure has been produced for each service by adding those who were quite or very satisfied and subtracting those who were quite or very dissatisfied, leaving out those who replied not really noticed/not relevant to me Table 19: Non-members net satisfaction with benefits/services while student member Net Satisfaction Non members Paying members Not really noticed/not relevant to me Non members Paying members Printed materials for student teachers Printed materials for NQTs Members magazine Union s website Financial benefits Legal services Support/advice from reps at school Support/advice from officials Overall, they had pretty high satisfaction levels of the unions printed materials, but satisfaction rates were lower for the other services listed, especially the support and advice received from the unions. There may be a case for looking at the way in which a student member is made aware of a union rep at schools where they do their teacher training. The main reason for lower satisfaction scores in the bottom part of this table is the high proportions of those responding not noticed/not really relevant. This is not surprising as these respondents were only union members as students and for a limited period of time so they would not have had much opportunity to make use of such services. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS March 2006

17 Non-members who had been student members had slightly lower satisfaction rates than paying members with all the benefits and service asked about. And they had much lower awareness, with the exception of websites, which they were only slightly less aware about than paying members. Factors against being a Paying Member The survey presented a list of 15 factors which might have militated against NQTs becoming paying members. They were first asked to tick any that applied to them and were then asked which one of them was the most important factor militating against union membership. However, since only 38 respondents answered the second question, the results for what was the most important factor must be treated very cautiously. Because of this the absolute number of respondents singling out each option are given in brackets in the table. Table 20: Factors which stop non-members from being paying members Was a factor % Was the most important factor % (number) I don t want to pay the cost of union subscriptions (13) I am confused because there are so many teacher unions (9) No-one has really asked me (5) I am not interested in unions (3) Not many teachers that I know/at my school are members I don t like what I see of teaching unions through the media (1) (1) There s no advantage in being a member (1) Teacher unions are always arguing with government or employers (1) I disagree with unions in general (2) Teaching unions don t have any influence/power (1) I don t think unions are appropriate to teachers (0) Teaching unions are too ready to take industrial action (1) Teacher unions are always arguing among themselves (0) Being a members might damage my career prospects (0) I don t like what I know of teaching unions through other teachers (0) When asked to tick all the factors that applied to them, the most commonly cited were I don t want to pay the cost of union subscriptions and I am confused because there are so many teacher unions both ticked by 38% of non-members. The next most common reason was non-one has really asked me, ticked by 29.6%. In fourth place was I am not really interested in unions, cited by 9.9%. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS March 2006

18 When asked to choose the single most important factor, the same three cropped up but with the cost of subscriptions taking a more clear lead (singled out by 13 of the 38 non members who answered this question), followed by confusion over the number of teacher unions (singled out by nine) and then not having been asked (chosen by five). Oppositional trade unionism did not seem to be much of a disincentive to joining unions - few respondents singled out Teaching unions are too ready to take industrial action or Teacher unions are always arguing with government or employers as main reasons not to join. NUT-LRD RES NQTS JOIN OR NOT_RB/CS March 2006

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