Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/787/17695
Answering Tory lies about teachers
Monique, Bradford Socialist Party
I work in education and see the effects that cuts to jobs and services have on our younger generation and the toll that constant stress takes on our teachers and school staff.
Propaganda by the clearly uneducated Tory minister Gove suggests that teachers are underworked and overpaid and don't deserve holidays, let alone have the right to take strike action.
Are teachers 'underworked'? Many teachers work long hours from before 8am and after 5pm, not only because of meetings, lesson planning and marking but also because of constant changes in setting objectives and changes in the curriculum.
That's not to mention the work taken home over the weekend and performance related pay.
Are teachers 'overpaid'? If we were to calculate a teacher's salary by the hour (based on the amount of work they do) the average would be less than the national minimum wage.
Do teachers not deserve holidays? Many teachers spend most of their half-term and full-term breaks catching up with the mountains of work they need to do for the next term as more and more schools are setting objectives for each term eight weeks in advance,
Don't teachers have the right to take strike action? Is this because it inconveniences people? That means it is an effective way to get the government's attention.
The stress caused by attacks on pensions and increasing workloads has a detrimental effect on the lives of teachers (including the newly qualified ones) and also on those pupils whose lives we are trying to change for the better.
Are we letting pupils down by striking? On the contrary! If teachers and school staff were to continue having their terms and conditions attacked, we would already have let our pupils down if we did not stand up for ourselves.
We should send a message to this oppressive government that we will fight for a real future for our pupils' education, and defend teachers.
In The Socialist 6 November 2013:
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