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Season finale

Union deliberations give rise to the simultaneous announcements of a consultation and plans for further strikes.

Just after 5pm yesterday, we heard the results of the deliberations of the University and College Union’s higher education committee on the next steps in the industrial dispute with Universities UK over proposed changes to the Universities Superannuation Scheme. The union is to put the employers’ latest offer to a vote of members, while at the same time giving notice of plans for another 14 days of strikes during the exam period.

It has been a long, hard winter at the HE news desk. On the first of January, we had the news that Toby Young had been appointed to the board of the Office for Students, and it’s been non-stop action since then. We have had a change of minister, a funding review, the lecturers’ strike and of course the twists and turns of Brexit. With a new quality code in place, the funding council winding down, parliament going into recess and the civil service entering purdah, we had thought of this last Playbook of term as a season finale in which all the loose ends of our various subplots would be tied up in a thrilling denouement.

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