In yet another act of contempt for public service workers, Osborne’s latest budget saw the Conservative government declare their plans to impose yet another change – the removal of all schools from local authority control, to become academies by 2020.
Rightfully outraged, members of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) called for a ballot on industrial action to take place during the summer term. This was passed with an overwhelming mandate at their national conference in Brighton this weekend. Speaking to NASUWT’s conference in Birmingham, Tory Education Secretary Nicky Morgan told members that there was “no reverse gear” and that the plans could not be changed. This was rightly condemned by Jeremy Corbyn at the NUT conference, describing it as a shameful process of “asset stripping”.
Another victim of the government’s reckless ‘reorganisations’, the junior doctors, held a fringe event at the conference in Brighton, expressing their solidarity with teachers during this turbulent period, and aiming to move their action forwards together. The atmosphere was electric, one of complete indignation, yet optimistic, with the packed room finished their meeting with chants of “Doctors and teachers, unite and strike!”
As more workers fall victim to austerity under this bankrupt system, there is a sense of anger rising through workplaces, and this frustration must be channelled into a powerful social movement, whether that be in hospitals, schools, factories or universities. The assault on teachers and doctors are part of the wider attacks on the working class caused by the crisis of capitalism. This latest action could spell the beginning of plans for a general strike, something we wholeheartedly support as a step towards the bringing down of the government and the overthrow of capitalism, which is the only way to end crisis and austerity for good.
As with the recent examples of the junior doctors and steelworkers, the Marxist Student Federation will stand shoulder to shoulder with teachers every step of the way.
- For teachers’ industrial action!
- For unity of action with a general strike to bring down the government!
- For the socialist transformation of society!