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From The Socialist newspaper, 7 February 2018

Striking back against academies in Newham

Pickets at Avenue School, 14.12.17, photo James Ivens

Pickets at Avenue School, 14.12.17, photo James Ivens   (Click to enlarge)

Helen Pattison, East London Socialist Party

It's been months since teachers at Avenue School in Newham, east London, uncovered plans for the school to become an academy.

A lot has happened since then. Days of strike action have already been taken. A new fighting National Education Union branch secretary has been elected, Louise Cuffaro, who is also a Socialist Party member. And parents have organised themselves into a campaign alongside teachers to fight for schools to remain under local authority control.

Other schools in the borough have also found out they are being threatened with academy status and have taken action. Cumberland and Royal Docks have all taken strike action. There was a large community meeting to build a campaign at Shaftesbury Primary School.

Later this month, Avenue teachers will walk out again, this time for three consecutive days. They will be joined on the final day by other schools in a joint day of action against academies, backed up by many parents across the borough.

As well as the strike action, on 26 February campaigners, parents and teachers from all the threatened schools in Newham will take their anger to the steps of the town hall during the full council meeting.

While a small number of Corbyn-supporting councillors have either visited picket lines or met with campaigners, other Labour councillors are pushing for academies. These councillors don't deserve an easy ride; parents and teachers should lobby councillor's surgeries and call on them to oppose academies.

Reports from local Labour Party meetings show that it has been Labour councillors voting down motions in support of the strikes and the anti-academies campaign.

If councillors aren't going to fight in the interests of local people, they should stand down now or campaigners may be forced to stand against them.

A strong anti-academies voice in the council chamber could help stop save our schools but whatever happens, local teachers will continue to fight alongside parents for local authority schools in Newham.

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In The Socialist 7 February 2018:


Save our NHS

NHS - build the fightback

NHS day of action: all around the country

Tragic death exposes criminal understaffing of NHS

York socialists head resistance to NHS outsourcing

Trump v NHS


News

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90 feared dead after migrant boat capsizes


What we think

Corbyn's left must seize the advantage in Labour's civil war


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Haringey: now's our chance for a no-cuts council

Walthamstow: occupy to save the town square

Scene set for TUSC conference electoral debate


Workplace

Royal Mail forced back under threat of action

Unison national women's conference

Striking back against academies in Newham


International socialist news and analysis

May's silence is a green light for Chinese repression

Sudan: Mohamed Satti released - global solidarity campaign gets results!

Protesters denounce oppressive Sri Lankan regime


Opinion

GCSE grading game stresses out students - even more than before!

Fighting sexism: Positive discrimination - yea or neigh?

Bernie's book shows need for workers' party

Darkest Hour: Not the usual flattery of brutal Tory Churchill

The Socialist inbox


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

The Socialist Party is being evicted - we need you!

Yorkshire Socialist Party regional conference


 

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Related links:

Academies:

triangleBlairites plan to expand their very own academy chain

triangleSchool students in solitary: for full funding, not exclusion!

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Building the movement for socialism this autumn

triangleVictory: how school strike beat 'academy' privatisers

triangleVictory against academisation

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triangleNewham by-election: We need anti-austerity councillors

triangleNewham finance staff fight pay and grading insult

triangleRonan Point disaster 50 years on

triangleSchool strike forces head to say privatisation will stop

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triangleIndefinite dinner ladies' and teaching assistants' strike

triangleNational Education Union: vote for action on funding

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triangleOver one million students strike against sexism and for inclusive sex education

triangleSave Our Schools

Councillors:

triangleCardiff East Socialist Party: How councillors can fight the cuts

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