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From The Socialist newspaper, 8 March 2002

ISR Day Of Action

THE INTERNATIONAL Socialist Resistance (ISR) day of action on 15 March against cuts in education will see many activities throughout England and Wales.

Clare James

In London, protests will involve students from LSE and UCL universities against the Andersen company, and their involvement in the privatisation of education.

A lunchtime walkout and protest will take place in Hackney, against recent council cuts to education, and protests and stalls will be held in other parts of London.

In Merseyside, a meeting is being organised against the commercialisation of education in the run-up to 15 March. In Newcastle, there will be a stall and action at the FE (Further Education) college. There will be a lobby of the local MP in Preston and stalls and meetings in universities at Manchester and Salford.

Protests at Southampton University will also involve students from local FE and sixth-form colleges.

A half day strike is being organized in Bristol FE college and there will be a lunchtime demonstration at Gateway sixth-form college in Leicester, involving students from De Montfort university. There will also be action in Nottingham.

In Yorkshire a rally is being organised in Sheffield University and action is being organised in Leeds University, Barnsley College and in Bradford. There is also action planned in Coventry and in Stafford-shire University.

There will also be protests around Swansea College and the University of Glam-organ. There will be actions in other areas too.

If you want to get involved it's not too late to help out with building these events, such as leafleting etc.


Hodge Dodges The Real Issues

MARGARET HODGE, minister for universities, thinks that students have a "ruddy good time", that our debts are 'modest' and our studies wouldn't suffer if we did some part-time work.

Bristol student FIONA PASHAZADEH thinks Hodge is talking nonsense.

FOR MOST students Hodge's comments just aren't true. It's very disturbing that New Labour has asked this woman to co-ordinate a high-level review of student funding.

Of course part-time work affects studies - how can it fail to? Even if the contact time involved in the course is eight or nine hours a week, the need for study doesn't end when you come home from lectures. It carries on constantly and if you care about the result of your degree, which most students do, study can take up a lot of time.

A part-time job severely decreases how much time a student can spend doing academic work. This obviously affects the quality of learning.

I had to give up my part-time job recently as I was getting behind with study and felt there was no point in coming to university if I couldn't do my best. Many working-class students don't have this option - they need the money to survive as the student loan just isn't enough to live on.

Many students have to work two jobs in order to have the amount of money they need, greatly increasing the stress they're already under.

With the continued privatisation of university halls of residence and talk of introducing commercial rate loans, the financial burden which students carry will only get larger, forcing working-class students out of higher education.

Margaret Hodge doesn't understand how today's students live. Maybe if she'd gone to university under such a system, she'd think twice about making such ridiculous comments.

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In The Socialist 8 March 2002:

Protest Against Privatisation

Education - A Right Not A Privilege

ISR Day Of Action

US Policy Goes Up In Smoke

What Future For The NHS?


 

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