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24 February 2021

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

School staff picket in Hackney. Photo: Rob Williams

School staff picket in Hackney. Photo: Rob Williams   (Click to enlarge)

Teaching assistants (TAs) in Hackney, east London took strike action against redundancies on 10-12 February. Hackney Socialist Party interviewed two striking TAs with over 30 years' service. Read more in 'Hackney teaching assistants strike against cruel and unnecessary job cuts' at socialistparty.org.uk

"We're on strike because there have been forced redundancies, and the numbers of support staff at our school, Colvestone Primary, have been cut completely in half.

So this means that the children of our school, when they do eventually come back, are not going to get the support they deserve and are entitled to.

There is no way that just five staff in this school will be able to cover all those children who have special educational needs. They have the money allocated to them through statements. They won't get the support that they deserve and is paid for.

This is just the start of it. This is going to happen across Hackney. They've already threatened to shut five schools within the next two years. That's why we're making a stand.

I've been made compulsorily redundant. But I'm still prepared to stand and fight to show solidarity for my colleagues who have been left behind, and who will face wage cuts and increased workloads.

That's why I'm here today on the picket line. To stand and fight for the future education of children in Hackney.

The 'reason' for redundancies of support staff is the budget deficit and falling numbers of children. The governing body have a financial committee. Why have they not, before it got to this stage, looked at how they were spending money?

And furthermore, children have left Colvestone Primary to go to Shacklewell. They've increased their numbers, but we've lost children. So they need to look at why children are leaving this particular school, a small community school where every child knows every member of staff, and vice versa.

What is going wrong at Colvestone that is not at Shacklewell? It's to do with the way the school's managed. It's management.

The picket line today was brilliant, absolutely fantastic. I'll be back tomorrow and Friday."

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In The Socialist 24 February 2021:


Where's the road map to jobs and wages Boris?

Johnson's 'road map' for schools: Act together to protect safety

Vaccine algorithm can't solve capitalist inequality

Garment workers and Covid: Dying for less than minimum wage

What we think

Starmer's speech a return to New Labour


Justice for Moyied Bashir

Uber drivers win case - they are workers

Social care: End privatisation and let workers decide how it's run

Lessons from history

How militant trade unionism defeated the 1971 Industrial Relations Act

Workplace news

Usdaw elections - right makes gains but Broad Left builds

HMRC: Divisive pay deal leads to expulsions

Hinkley Point electricians fight 'deskilling'

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

London bus dispute against low pay, pay cuts and longer hours

GMB members continue fight against 'fire and rehire' in British Gas

Scunthorpe steelworks scaffolders: Fifth week of action


Liverpool Unite branch supports 'no cuts' budget strategy

Scottish TUSC election campaign launch

Keep the fighting fund rushing in for a TUSC stand in May

Campaigns news

W. Sussex children's centres on the chopping block

Coventry success building subscriptions

Socialist Students conference - postering

Save John Carroll Leisure Centre

Getting the Socialist out in lockdown

LGBT+ history month

Pride flag is about unity in struggle

Tories tout toilet tensions

International news

Nigeria: Abbey Trotsky on trial for assisting workers' struggle

Facebook v Australian government: nationalise the bosses' media!

Readers' opinion

Film Review: The White Tiger

Tories admit guilt for asylum seeker neglect

Tories target universities in free speech shakedown

The Socialist Inbox


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Teaching assistants:

triangleHackney teaching assistants strike against cruel and unnecessary job cuts

Article dated 24 February 2021

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

Thurrock council workers striking against pay cuts, photo Dave Murray

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