Swansea Socialist Party members had an enthusiastic response when we took part in a 200-strong meeting in Gowerton to oppose education cuts.
The meeting at Gowerton Comprehensive on Thursday night was organised by the National Association of Head Teachers to campaign for fair funding for education in Wales.
The Socialist Party leaflet calling on Swansea Labour Council to fight against Tory cuts – instead of proposing £22m cuts next year – was snapped up by teachers and parents as they went into the meeting, along with a number of papers. One teacher signed a join card.
The first member of the audience called to speak was Carmarthenshire County Unison branch secretary Mark Evans, speaking in a personal capacity, who brought solidarity to the NAHT and spoke of how the branch fought off planned education cuts through a campaign which included leafletting 40 schools.
He said that all councils must stand up against the cuts.
“Are children getting the support they need? No. Are children with special needs getting the support they need? No, they are not.
“Schools have had their budgets squeezed and squeezed and squeezed. No councillor wants to make cuts. It’s a choice. Stand up to cuts and say we are not going to do the Tories’ dirty work.”
Alec Thraves of Swansea Socialist Party said education would be devastated by the cuts and called for a no-cuts budget, using reserves and borrowing, and joining with other councils to oppose Tory cuts.
· No more cuts – set a legal ‘No Cuts’ budget!
· Link up action with other teaching and local government unions!
· Set up a co-ordinating committee to fight the cuts!
· Lobby the Cabinet meeting (Feb 8) and protest outside the full council meeting (Feb 22).
· Initiate a Swansea march and rally against the cuts!