Wide screen devices may view this page better by clicking here

6 January 2021

Facebook   Twitter

Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

University teaching moves online in England

Workers to fight redundancies and pay freeze

Brighton UCU pickett line Photo: Glenn Kelly

Brighton UCU pickett line Photo: Glenn Kelly   (Click to enlarge)

Bea Gardner, Southampton UCU (personal capacity)

Like in the rest of education, university staff and students are left in disarray by this consistently inconsistent and incompetent Tory government.

Under mounting pressure even before the lockdown announcement, the universities minister, Michelle Donelan, sent a last-minute letter to universities on 30 December (one working day before students were due back) to announce a staggered return from 25 January for students. Then, just days later, unmentioned in Boris Johnson's speech, the government gave instructions to keep learning online. Meanwhile, as it stands, the Welsh government is set to continue with a staggered return.

In England, where the announced lockdown does mitigate some of the worst of workers immediate safety fears, it still poses challenges. Those now attempting to manage home working with home schooling need appropriate flexible working arrangements, including paid time off if needed.

Workers asked to attend the workplace still need safety provision and new risk assessments which take into account the higher infectivity rates of the new Covid strain. Postgraduate students continue to resist government's decision that they should "adapt" their projects without funding extensions. And of course, we still face the onslaught of cuts and voluntary and compulsory redundancies, alongside the announced pay freeze for this year.

But branches of the University and Colleges Union (UCU) are fighting back. Members at Brighton, East London and Goldsmiths universities have successfully won ballots for industrial action against redundancies. They could soon be joined by many other UCU branches including Solent, Manchester Met, Roehampaton and Birmingham, all having delivered impressive consultative ballot results in the autumn term.

The National Education Union has showed that unions have power (see pages 2-3) - collective organising can win massive concessions for workers. Such action is a start towards building a movement capable of winning more than concessions, but transforming our workplaces in our interests.

Donate to the Socialist Party

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.

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 Fighting Fund.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 6 January 2021:


Feature

2020 - a year which drove home the catastrophic failures of capitalism


Schools

Workers' action wins Tory U-turn on school safety


News

3 lockdowns, 20+ U-turns ... We can't trust the Tories

Nottingham City Council: Major battles against cuts ahead

UNICEF feeds children in the UK for the first time

News in brief

Hospital security staff on strike for 12 an hour

British Gas workers on strike against fire and re-hire pay cut


NHS

Protect the NHS - Funding, Pay, PPE, Public ownership

Protect lives and livelihoods, fight to defend the NHS


Engels

Engels on the origins of women's oppression


Universities

Universities: refund the rent, cancel the fees, for fully funded, publicly owned education

University teaching moves online in England


Reader's opinion

Books that inspired me: The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

Technology and AI response: Capitalists only invest for profit


 

Home   |   The Socialist 6 January 2021   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Universities:

triangleFighting sexual harassment and gender violence on campus

trianglePolice invade student homes

triangleTories target universities in free speech shakedown

triangleWhy you should come to Socialist Students online conference

triangleSocialist Students open letter to Rent Strike network

Workers:

triangleTensions escalate in Northern Ireland

triangle1920s-30s Britain: A working-class movement fighting unemployment and capitalism

triangleCovid inquiry? Workers must decide

triangleWorkers strike and protest

Redundancies:

triangleEast London cleaners fight outsourcing and redundancies

triangleLeicester university workers ballot for action against redundancies

triangle"I'm here to fight for the future education of children in Hackney"

Pay:

triangleSupport the Broad Left Network for a democratic, fighting union leadership

triangleThurrock council workers striking against pay cuts, photo Dave Murray

Government:

triangleNHS pay: reject Tories' miserly 1% 'offer' - Fight for full 15% rise

Students:

triangleYouth under attack

UCU:

triangleFurther education workers win pay rise in Wales

Lockdown:

triangleGetting the Socialist out in lockdown

Education:

triangleStudents in action: Protest on 21 April

Article dated 6 January 2021

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

MEMBER RESOURCES

Pay in Fighting Fund

Pay in paper and book sales

Leaflets

Bulk book orders

New member submission

WHAT'S ON

triangle14 Apr Hackney & Islington Socialist Party: Lessons of the 1921 Poplar councillors' struggle

triangle14 Apr Tyneside Socialist Party: Our TUSC against cuts electoral challenge

triangle15 Apr Sheffield Socialist Party: When Liverpool beat Thatcher

More...


The Socialist, weekly newspaper of the Socialist Party

Covid-19

News

Elections

Workplace news

Lessons from history

Campaigns news

Readers' opinion

Subscribespacer|spacerebook / Kindlespacer|spacerPDF versionspacer|spacerText / Printspacer|spacer1129 onlinespacer|spacerBack issuesspacer|spacer Audio files


Thurrock council workers striking against pay cuts, photo by Dave Murray

Thurrock council workers striking against pay cuts, photo Dave Murray

What We Stand For
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Platform setting: =

Desktop version