Weekly solidarity report by the NEU Left. If you have a dispute or a report you want us to spread the word about just get in touch. Email: [email protected]

We urge all our supporters to send messages of support and solidarity to colleagues on strike or in dispute. It may seem a small thing- but as anyone who has been on strike knows these messages do make a real difference. You don’t need to write an essay- just a quick line saying you heard about the dispute and are sending your solidarity on behalf of your school group of NEU district is enough.

Many strikers are also keen to come and speak at school or district meetings about their fight. Just email requests to them and they will get back to you- and this is much easier in a time when many meetings are virtual of course.

Solidarity calling- an injury to one is an injury to all.

We want to stay as a community school

St Matthew’s strikers take their message to Cidari MAT last week

Over 40 NEU members at St Matthew’s Church of England Primary in Preston continued their fight against academisation with more strikes last week. They have now been out for nine days, and plan more strikes next week. The school governors plan to move te school from being a community school under the local authority to being part of the Cidari Multi Academy Trust, run by the church’s Diocese of Blackburn. Last week strikers took their message to Cidari HQ in Blackburn to press for a delay and talks. NEU rep Julie Copeland says: ” St Matthew’s is a community school. The staff have known families for years and it needs to stay in the community. It doesn’t need someone from somewhere else trying to manage the school.”

Newham step up the fight

A group of strikers at NewVic college
Newham strikes out again last week Picture: Guy Smallman

NEU members at Newham sixth form college in east London stepped up their fight with three more strike days and a rally last week, as they continue their battle against academisation, workload and management practices.

“The NEU has seen solid picket lines and education workers at the college remain determined to win.,” says NEW rep Rob.

“We have taken eight days of action so far and have seen support from NEU branches around London and from the unions—the UCU, PCS and Unite.”

Picket lines are lively, attended by dozens of workers, parents and local activists. And workers from Oaks Park High School in the neighbouring borough, Redbridge, have joined the pickets previously.

Some placards on the picket lines last week read, “Principles not CEOs,” “Teaching over testing,” and, “Accountability, not accounting.” Workers chanted, “No academies.”

NEU membership has increase to overt 100 during the strikes. NEU president Daniel Kebede has been on the picket lines supporting the fight and says, “Fighting to defend NewVic from privatisation and keep it a community college will benefit all of Newham.”

As well as messages of support the strikes are keen to speak at other NEU district and school meetings. Please contact for both messages of supoprt and invites to speak: Rob Behan at [email protected]

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