Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1067/29977
Carlisle election meeting: Education - time to make the mega-rich and corporations pay
The Labour candidate for Carlisle, Ruth Alcroft, spoke at a Socialist Party public election meeting in the city on 2 December. It followed the handing over of a petition to her from 500 local parents and teachers against the Tory cuts to school funding. The signatures had been collected by us on regular city centre campaign stalls this autumn.
Ruth said: "I am proud of the Labour manifesto for education. We have committed not only to properly funding schools, not only to removing the stress of SATs and Ofsted to focus on delivering education that is meaningful to each student and trusts teachers, not only to keeping class sizes below 30 throughout primary school, but also to 'poverty proofing' schools, introducing free school meals for all primary school students, encouraging breakfast clubs and tackling the cost of school uniforms."
Martin Powell-Davies, a member of the teachers' union NEU and the Socialist Party, offered an alternative to the schools crisis. "We need 15,000 more teachers immediately and more to bring class sizes down.
We should scrap student fees and restore the grant for uni and FE students. We should replace academies, grammar and public schools with a comprehensive education system under the democratic control of parents, teachers, students and the local community. After a decade of sacrifice by our kids it's time to make the mega-rich and corporations pay."
Don't assume that your child will benefit from the Tory election giveaway. The Education Policy Institute has discovered that most of this money will go to schools in wealthier areas, while those with already 'disadvantaged' (working-class) children will miss out. England's 163 grammar schools will be given an average extra £130,000 each.
And how about this for class prejudice and buttering up your core voters: 93% of the schools receiving more than £100 per pupil extra are in Tory strongholds! They will get an average £116 per non-disadvantaged pupil, while schools with those eligible for free school meals will only get another £56.
We want sufficient resources for all children, students and trainees to get the academic, vocational and life education they want. The first step to that is to get the Tories out and let Corbyn build his National Education Service.
Brent Kennedy, Carlisle Socialist Party
Donate to the Socialist Party
Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal
The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
- The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
- Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
- When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to click here to donate to our special coronavirus appeal.
- Click here to read our full appeal statement
- Click here for our coronavirus articles and reports
- Click here to join the Socialist Party
In The Socialist 4 December 2019:
What we think
International socialist news and analysis
Socialist Party reports and campaigns