education

SolFedders March Against Fees and Cuts

On Saturday 29th January, at least a dozen SolFedders from London and the surrounding area joined thousands of students, trade unionists, and workers to march in opposition to cuts to services, job losses, and increases in fees.  A similar demonstration was held Manchester where Aaron Porter, the sellout head of the NUS, had to be escorted away by police as he was taunted and chased by angry demonstrators.  Needless to say, SFers in both cities applaud the Manchester crowd in recognizing that sometimes our class enemies try to speak in our name.

Fitwatch & LDMG Workshop

A report back from a student workshop co-ordinated by North London Solidarity Federation, held on 25/01/11 at Queen Mary University in Tower Hamlets.

NLSF co-ordinated a highly practical workshop for students (and anybody else) going on the many demonstrations against the rise in tuition fees and cuts in education spending. First up were the Legal Defence Monitoring Group who laid out the basics of the law that is used against protesters on demonstrations and how to get around it. This was followed up by Fitwatch, the activist group dedicated to combating the oppressive surviellance of the Forward Intelligence Teams that plague demonstrations. The main tips here were to mask up, wear plain clothing, and, when in sizeable groups, prevent the FIT cameras from filming you by blocking their line of sight with placards and banners.

Comment & Opinion: Education workers - just say no

I work in an FE college which has a very autocratic management which operates by bullying, intimidation and isolation.  No unions are recognised and new members of staff are given the impression that they may not join a union.  But...  There is a rising level of dissatisfaction and discontent, connected to the idea that people may like to talk and do something about it (mainstream union membership is actually on the rise).

Recently a ‘request’ came down from senior management to a certain group of staff that they must consider themselves to be on call on demand.  This was justified as coming under that lovely catch all contractual phrase “any other duty necessary to the fulfilment of your role.”

An open letter to parents and school staff from a local teacher

We're publishing here a letter to parents and school staff that we received from a local teacher.

Protests by college and school students on November 24th and 30th were an exuberant festival of disorder. Young people threw down a challenge to adults facing threats to our livelihoods from the all-party cuts currently starting to kick in. Students as young as twelve got out on the streets, stepping out of their allotted roles and creating a vibrant, positive response to the vicious attacks that their generation are facing. At one Brighton school over 550 pupils walked out - a third of the total school population - as well as hundreds from other Brighton schools and Lewes Priory.

Italy: Fighting Neoliberal Reforms in Education

Since October last year, students from all over Italy have been involved in a wide number of protests against new laws which are aiming to introduce neoliberal reforms in both schools and universities. These new laws, law 133 and law 169, have been put forward by minister of education Mariastella Gelmini who is aiming to balance the government’s books through cutting public expenditure in education. The main thrust of the new laws are:

Tremough Campus occupation, Falmouth

Tremough Campus occupation report (university of exeter)

30 of us are currently in the busy lower stannary building occupying and sitting in against the education cuts. We are refusing by direct action to pay for the crisis of the bankers and greedy politicians who are ruthlessly putting profits before people. Students in the occupation understand that this action must be followed by a wider workers movement against education cuts and the public sector massacre in general. Falmouth is already one of the poorest cities in the European Union, and this university is at the heart of its local economy and culture, brutal cut backs now will throw back all the progress made in the area back into a bleak era of thatcherism.

Student protests: Solfed member reports

Initial reports and images from Liverpool London, Brighton and elsewhere on today's events, where Solidarity Federation has a presence for the student anti-fees protests:

Liverpool

Initial estimates suggested a turnout of thousands who brought Lime Street to a standstill, with a fast moving march featuring an attempted sit-down in Castle Street.

While most commenters are agreeing that the protest has been peaceful, police brought out dogs and horses and there have been complaints of "intimidating behaviour." The march was largely halted as of 1pm but quickly got moving again and reached the town hall at around 1.30pm. Hundreds of people filled all levels of the Liverpool One shopping centre, and the protest broke up at around 2.30pm.

Don't Be Kettled!

Students walking out on 24th November should avoid being trapped outside the Lib Dem HQ, says one of the groups behind the Radical Workers and Students Bloc on the 10th November demonstration. Instead, according to South London's branch of the anarcho-syndicalist Solidarity Federation, those taking action on this day should hold roaming marches blockading general economic targets.

"Hardcore troublemaker" anarchist group laughs off Millbank blame game

Solidarity Federation, which helped organise the Radical Workers' and Students Bloc at the NUS/UCU education march derides "absurd and patronising" attempts to blame it for damage at Tory HQ - and calls for increasing direct action against cuts.

News reporters have been indulging in some imaginative speculation over the last few days suggesting that the temporary occupation of the Conservative Party headquarters on November 10 was down to an internet conspiracy consisting of, among other groups, the Solidarity Federation. This is sensationalist nonsense.