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8 December 2021

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Newham Sixth Form College begins strike against academisation

NewVIC picket line 1 December Photo: James Ivens

NewVIC picket line 1 December Photo: James Ivens   (Click to enlarge)

Staff at Newham Sixth Form College (NewVIC) in east London walked out against privatisation on 1 December.

The 'chief executive' (headteacher) of this community college wants it to become a privately run 'academy'. That means private firms can profit from the budget, there's no limit on management salaries, and national terms and conditions for staff don't apply. Naturally, there was no consultation!

The National Education Union (NEU) now has over 100 members at NewVIC, with many signing up because of the strike. They voted overwhelmingly for the action. Dozens joined the picket line on the first day.

As the Socialist goes to press, workers are due to strike again on 8-9 December. More days will likely be needed to force management back. The NEU is ready to call further action after the Christmas break.

Louise Cuffaro, secretary of Newham NEU and Socialist Party member, said: "We are going to fight to keep this a community college. If you don't fight, you can't win.

"We've kept places in this borough away from academisation. They're not accountable. We'll keep going week in, week out. He thinks you're going to be worn out after a day, or after two days. We are not going anywhere!"

NEU reps from the neighbouring borough of Redbridge also joined the picket line, fresh from the 33-day strike against bullying at Oaks Park secondary school. Oaks Park rep Bill Stockwell led rounds of Solidarity Forever on his cornet, and victimised rep Keiran Mahon joined in solidarity.

The culture of bullying is also a problem at NewVIC, and at schools and colleges around the country. National action to reduce workload and improve pay is the best way to start changing this.

James Ivens, East London Socialist Party

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In The Socialist 8 December 2021:


Unite to fight for pay and NHS we deserve

Government social care plans: Where is the money?

Uni staff and students must unite to end marketisation and for free education

Covid news in brief

What we think

Workers' politics needed to exploit Tory scandal and splits

People's Budgets

Building People's Budgets: An alternative to Tory and Labour cuts

International news

Chile presidential election - stop the far-right candidate

Unprecedented floods in British Columbia

Wider working-class and union struggle needed to win St Vincent nurses' strike

Defending abortion rights in the US

Workplace news

Universities strike - build the action and stand united to win

Thousands of Tesco warehouse workers to strike

Sandwell bin workers beat Serco and win pay rise

Panasonic workers break company pay freeze

Clarks strikers defeat 'fire and rehire'

Organise to win the NEU's 8% pay demand

Yorkshire Stagecoach bus workers' week-long strike

Worksop Wincanton logistics workers on strike

Newham Sixth Form College begins strike against academisation

Sheffield Just East couriers picket and march for pay rise

Napo ballots for trade dispute

Campaigns news

Affordable housing for all

Challenge cutters and evictors in Waltham Forest Council

Remembering Tony Davison

Fighting Fund: Help us reach over 50,000

Defying unjust laws - a rich history of struggle

Mail attacks tube strikers by stealing socialist's image


Film review: The Harder They Fall


Home   |   The Socialist 8 December 2021   |   Join the Socialist Party

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Article dated 8 December 2021

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Coventry bin workers on strike, January 2022, photo by Dave Nellist

Socialist Party members joined the picket lines of striking bin workers in Coventry fighting for better pay. January 2022

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