The University of Warwick launches new department to employ all temporary or fixed-term teaching staff

Warwick Uni has created a new body to take on staff. All temporary employees, and fixed term employees will be brought under the new department.

Whilst at the time of writing, April 2015, only certain departments use the existing ‘TeachHigher’ pilot scheme. The idea is to consistently apply the methods to the entire university, and potentially commercially sell the service to other educational institutions.

The department will manage staff in roles such as:

  • Cleaning
  • Catering
  • Exam invigilation

Many people are not happy with these plans. The organisation FACE (Fighting Against Casualisation in Education) said: “The outsourcing of hourly paid academic staff will very clearly institutionalise what is already beginning to look like a two tier system within academia – separating out low paid casualised staff (who increasingly do the bulk of departmental teaching) from permanent staff.

TeachHigher claims that it wants to make the employment of casualised academic staff more ‘standardised and efficient’. We say that the best way to achieve this is to end casualised contracts and give fractional and fixed-term staff the same rights as permanent staff.

A former student who was indifferent to the plans remarked:

“As a University, in my opinion Warwick has always been really commercial.”

Another graduate business student joked:

“They were one of the earliest Universities to really work with businesses. Also, they have that classroom in the Shard right – how are they going to pay for that?”