Resolution on resisting neoliberal attacks on education
- Education has a unique place in the fight against the government and austerity. The attacks on education are blatantly driven by right wing ideology – privatisation, anti-trade union, riven by class prejudice – on the one hand; and on the other hand are economically and socially destructive. Education is a key factor in achieving economic, social and personal well being. Cutting education is cutting the future for our kids and the figures on youth unemployment, and declining degree applications are ample confirmation of this.
- Counterfire is uniquely placed to found and lead a fightback on education. Our articles on education have achieved widespread approval with the ones on Vygotsky and Freire being read internationally.
- Counterfire needs to sink further roots in the movement and because our approach is not syndicalist, we have a better grasp than most that in order to be successful we have to appeal to students and parents as well as teachers.
- To support the development of a Manifesto for Education and to create a national committee to oversee our work. This national committee on education should have the goal of establishing a broad united front approach, so that we are able to offer the Left response to Gove’s attacks which the teachers’ unions have so far been incapable of mounting. The recent decision to impose Performance Related Pay on teachers gives urgency to our efforts.
- To encourage all members of Counterfire to build meetings on education and try to establish local committees. We think that this will act to establish more meaningful Counterfire branches and influence and enrich the movement. Our kids are the future and they are being denied a voice and an education. It should be worth fighting for.
John is a history teacher and UCU rep. He is an active member of the People's Assembly and writes regularly for Counterfire.