An on-line meeting of Bridgwater Labour Party last week heard from two leading members of the National Education Union (NEU) and University & College Lecturers (UCU) about the impact of years of austerity, and now the Covid pandemic, on the education of our young people . The Covid pandemic has exposed the damage caused, over a number of years, by government imposition of “austerity” on public services. In the field of education, this means lack of funding; teacher shortages; inadequate buildings, lack of equipment and demoralisation of both teachers and learners.
Glen Burrows, Chair of Bridgwater Labour Party says “Of course, that austerity applies only to public services: not to pay increases for MPs, or subsidies and tax breaks for big business!
The system of education in Britain has, over a number of years, been turned into a system driven by competition between schools and colleges. Constant testing of students is not about enhancing learning, but about control, measurement and competition. Education is increasingly seen as a profit-making commodity, rather than a democratic right. Schools and colleges should be accountable to the communities they serve, via local authorities, and not run by un-elected private funders. This government’s aim is to turn all secondary and primary schools into academies. We must find ways to end this policy.
We must work together to bring about strong trade union organisation in our schools and colleges, along with a government which puts the well-being of our young people ahead of the needs of private profit.
Bridgwater Labour Party supports the National Education Union and the University and College Lecturers Union in their campaign for an inclusive and co-operative education system.”