UCU CCCU Update 16/07/20

Dear members,


As agreed at Branch The eballot on the Temporary Agreement will start on  the 17th of July and end on the 28th of July at 4pm.


UCU Head office are organising this and will be contacting you with full details of the balloting process and the Temporary Agreement and Guidelines for Implementation.


Please find attached ( in recent email ) an equality analysis document produced by HR.


Please continue to contact me regarding this update or issues relating to previous communications.


Best Wishes,




UCU CCCU Update Workload Planning 20/21

The current situation has put into sharp focus the centrality of Workload Planning (WLP).

The Pre Covid WLP structure was problematic and UCU CCCU believe not fit for purpose for managers and staff. This was the rationale for setting up, at the start of this academic year in collaboration with HR, a working group to review WLP.

Currently the situation regarding Planning for 20/21 and consideration of Short Time Working (STW) is complex and problematic

The Covid19 emergency has added an extra dimension to existing difficulties.

UCU CCCU continue to negotiate – within the Guidelines that will be attached to the Temporary Agreement (TA) and that will form the package members will vote on in the eballot – a workable structure for WLP under STW.

UCU CCCU have commented recent documentation on Blended Learning and LTEU documentation

Additionally below are some negotiation points being developed by UCU CCCU in relation to Project 20/21 and LTEU.

LTEU emphasise keeping it simple and this is vital and challenging – complexity needs to be resolved by CCCU leadership and not merely passed down.

LTEU and Blended Learning documentation should be live an flexible

WLP in the context of Covid and STW must be addressed realistically and directly.

In relation to individual staff

staff must feel that WLP is a valid process defining limits of workloads and protecting staff WLP cannot be  a fantasy” activity un-related to real workloads and work experiences

staff must have agency and involvement in the structuring of their WLP

staff must feel  supported by the WLP process so contact or engagement hours are real, reviewed and functioning boundaries marking limits of workload

staff must be aware of and understand a  process by which schools and programmes address WLP and which are open to review

staff must be aware of a meaningful process by which problems arising in phases of WLP (school, programme individual) can be listened to and addressed

In relation to Current UCU CCCU Negotiations, Documentation, LTEU and Blended Learning

Defining Terms is Important

The Document is a live document presenting developing guidelines for implementation of teaching in 20/21

Contact hours are in recent QAA documentation reframed as ‘engagement hours’. UCU CCCU believes this offers CCCU an opportunity to creatively re-frame and re-consider teaching workloads for 20/21. 


UCU CCCU believe engagement hours should include and limit:

Face to face on site teaching (this will not be an option for many staff and students)

Synchronous live on-screen teaching

Asynchronous teaching activities within a defined time period not synchronous.

Preparation / feedback time.



The situation is complex but CCCU leadership must mediate the complexity not isolate managers and staff within wicked problems that produce an impossible task


Keeping it simple suggests to UCU CCCU:

Mediating the complexity of issues not passing complexity down

Structuring terms and principles as key elements of documentation and allowing academics agency in curriculum construction and design

Empowering pedagogy – technology follows pedagogy not vice versa

Not overloading documentation – recognising resources and additional information as such and as additions/supplements to documentation



This applies to managers and staff and is dependent upon:

Identifying key areas for implementation of teaching and learning – before complex developments

Keeping technology do-able

Not adding to workload technology should decrease workload wherever possible

Recognising learning demands on staff

Weakest technological link (staff and students) will define efficacy

Recognising STW impacts as a vital component of planning


Key elements of Negotiations

CCCU Documents and communications must be user friendly distinguishing key definitions of terms and principles from additional materials (resources etc) and should communicate light touch and accessible materials  in live documents – e.g. “ways of starting’ ‘some ideas’ ‘resources and help”

Resources and Support must be available to staff (hardware and software support) 


WLP and Blended Learning must empower not overwhelm staff


Complexity needs to be mediated


WLP and Blended Learning must allow academics to have autonomy over delivery and implementation of Principles


Planning for 20/21 must facilitate a learning and developmental approach– with built in review


CCCU must avoid ‘technologism’ – the over-valuing of levels of technological aptitude as performed by staff – at all levels


Staff must feel able to prioritise pedagogy over technology


We welcome your comments on the above.


Best Wishes,


Bryan Hawkins



UCU CCCU encourages all members to engage with this survey, 

UCU CCCU encourages all members to engage with this survey, 


Reminder: staff pulse survey on transitioning back to campus working closes on Sunday


The staff pulse survey on transitioning back to campus working, closes on Sunday 19 July.


Your survey responses will help us to understand your thoughts about coming back to campus, and any concerns about this transition, as well as hear of positive experiences of returning to campus that could be maintained, shared, or from which we could all learn. Your responses will contribute to ensuring the University is providing the support you need for a safe and healthy return to working on campus, and will help us to learn from our collective experiences.


The survey, which takes just a few minutes to complete, can be found here. Please be reassured that your answers are anonymous, you will not be required to enter your name in the survey, and any demographic questions are asked so that we can understand if particular groups of staff have a different experience.


If you have any questions or concerns please contact people.development@canterbury.ac.uk.



Best Wishes,


Bryan Hawkins



UCU CCCU Update Health and Safety Issues

Health and Safety is a UCU and UCU CCCU priority.


Currently meetings and discussions across the University are engaging important aspects of planning for the 20/21 Academic Year and for Semester One.


The following is an  update regarding Health and Safety in these contexts.


No UCU CCCU member or member of staff should return to face to face on site teaching or to any campus site until they feel safe and have received and agreed a risk assessment appropriate to their specific  tasks and location.


The above is the responsibility of the University  


UCU CCCU  will support individual members and staff groups in this process. 

CCCU UCU  has been active in informing, working with, and where necessary challenging  management to ensure that any return to campus is managed in a way that  considers the health, safety, risks and hazards to all employees. There is a wealth of information available on Staff Net under FAQ’s on the current situation as the university prepares for a partial re-opening. However you may like to know where CCCU UCU are in relation to the ongoing discussion regarding some of the more central aspects of this .


As such the following have now been discussed. 


  1. Guidance regarding safe distancing is at this point in time an ongoing issue at CCCU. UCU’s and the T.U.C’s national position is that a distance on no less than 2mt should be adhered to at all times, and that 1.3 mt (to achieve 1m around a person) in many situations is insufficient. The issue of going to 1.3mt with mitigations on Campus (called 1m+ by the government) and particularly within a classroom environment has been discussed but at the time of writing not agreed by CCCU UCU,  however this may change over the short term as additional measures are considered.
  2. Risk assessment principles and practice for on-site working have now been drafted and made available. These have been based on the Government’s ‘ Working safely during Coronavirus‘ guidance. The CCCU-wide COVID-19 H&S guidance and risk assessment were updated and approved by Project 20/21 on the 18th June and published here – https://cccu.canterbury.ac.uk/Project-20-21/health-and-safety.aspx
  3. Note: Before any employee returns to work on campus

Best Wishes,


Bryan Hawkins Chair UCU CCCU

Chris Biela Health and Safety Officer UCU CCCU

Outcome of Branch meeting July 6th

Dear Members,


Thanks to all who attended the Branch Meeting.


A difficult phase in the ongoing negotiations with SMT has been completed.


Yesterday’s Branch  meeting (6 July 2020) has agreed to start the process for e-ballot on the Temporary Agreement agreed by JNCC.


This will allow all members, following circulation of the agreement, to vote to accept or reject the Temporary Agreement..


Best Wishes


Bryan Hawkins Chair UCU CCCU

Branch Meeting Monday 6 July from 1 to 2.30

Dear All,

As you know negotiations between Union and SMT are still going and a JNCC meeting is scheduled for Friday afternoon. Please watch the recording from VC Q&A session today (01.07).

Full discussion of the proposal will take place at the next Branch meeting on Monday 6 July from 1 to 2.30 the link has been sent to members.


Bryan Hawkins


If you are a member and not getting emails from us please alert us via branch email (ucucanterbury @ gmail.com)