Message from the Head of School

Planned Industrial Action November-December 2019

Dear all,

In view of the impending national industrial action I thought it would be helpful to write to all students, as I know that many of you are concerned. As I’m sure you are aware, academic staff are reluctant to go on strike, and action of this kind is very much a last resort. Clearly it will have some impact on your studies, but at this stage it is impossible to be certain about the extent of that impact, as there is no way of knowing how many individuals will participate in the action.

I have already suggested to those teaching in the School of English that they let students know whether or not specific teaching events will take place, in order to prevent wasted journeys to campus. However, if you are studying on a Tier 4 visa it is imperative that you come to campus even if you know a seminar or other teaching event is cancelled. The University will remain open throughout the strike, so you can still access library and other facilities, and arrange to meet with other students if you wish.

The University has now published web pages for students giving more information about the industrial action, which can be accessed here:

Industrial Action Information for Students

These pages should be your first port of call if you have any queries; they will be updated throughout the industrial action, so you may find it helpful to refer back to them from time to time.

I will be holding drop-in sessions during the industrial action for any student who would like to meet with me. These will take place in the Head of School’s office in Rutherford Extension: initial days/times are as follows (further days/times may be added as required):

  • Monday 25th November – 2.30-4.00pm
  • Wednesday 27th November – 1.00-3.00pm
  • Thursday 28th November – 2.30-4.00pm
  • Monday 2nd December – 2.30-4.00pm

Administrative colleagues in the School will not be on strike, and will be available as usual to deal with general enquiries and student support matters. They will not, however, have information about the cancellation of particular lectures/seminars/supervisions. If you are in any doubt about whether an event is taking place it is best to attend as scheduled.

If you have any questions or concerns do please drop in on one of the dates above.

With best wishes,


Dr Sarah James
Senior Lecturer in Medieval Literature and Head of School

School of English, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent CT2 7NX, UK

01227 (82)3358