A new report from the National Education Union and UK civil society organisation Global Justice Now examines the problems with privatisation of school education around the world and the role of the Department for International Development in pushing it through its aid programme.
Teaching about Palestine & Israel through the lens of human rights
The on-going crisis in Palestine and Israel remains firmly implanted in our imaginations, and with pupils acutely aware of it through social media, opinions at home and conversations with friends, many teachers are wondering how, and whether, to teach about this global issue. This resource, produced by Global Learning London, an organisation incubated in the Tower Hamlets Schools Library Service supports teachers to hold critical conversations about this ongoing crisis by sharing new and existing activities and resources. Read the resource here.
Conflict in the Middle East: Issues for Schools
The NEU has updated its advice, Conflict in the Middle East: Issues for Schools, which aims to support members to deal with the reactions of pupils and the wider community to the conflict. While some of the challenges staff face may require short-term measures to be taken following an escalation of violence in the Middle East, there are also longer-term issues around antiracism that can be addressed on an ongoing basis through the curriculum and by the promotion of a positive all-school environment and ethos. The advice covers some of the challenges staff and schools/colleges may face; the importance of adopting a whole-school/college approach; the role of staff; support for staff and pupils; the benefits of teaching media literacy; guidelines for teaching controversial issues; and schools and colleges’ legal duties. There is also a useful resources and support section.
Commercialisation and privatisation of education in the context of Covid-19
This report explores how privatisation and commercialisation of education have advanced during the 2020 pandemic, with a particular focus on educational technology (edtech). Read the report here. You can also read a blog by authors Ben Williamson and Anna Hogan here.
Annual Conference 2021 International Fringe Meetings
Colombian Teachers Defending Human Rights
Joint NEU General Secretary, Mary Bousted, joined William Velandia, President of the Colombian Federation of Education Workers (FECODE) and Hasan Dodwell, Director, Justice for Colombia at this meeting chaired by Dawn Taylor, Vice-Chair, NEU International Committee.
The meeting heard that despite Colombia being the world’s deadliest country for trade unionists, with at least 35 teachers murdered since 2018, teachers refuse to back down from their demands for decent conditions and investment in public education. Watch the recording of the Colombia fringe here.
The ‘Year of Education’ - Celebrating the 60th Anniversary of the Cuba’s National Literacy Campaign
Joint NEU General Secretary, Kevin Courtney, joined a panel that included Niurka Gonzalez Obera, General Secretary, Cuban Education Union (SNTECD); NEU member Alpha Kane, a Literacy Brigades specialist; and Karen Parkin, NEU Executive member who took part in the 2019 Cuba delegation. The meeting was chaired by Bernard Regan, Cuba Solidarity Campaign Secretary and an NEU Trustee. The meeting celebrated the 60th anniversary of Cuba’s National Literacy Campaign which saw more than 200,000 Cubans volunteer to help eliminate illiteracy in the country and included messages from three of the inspirational women who took part in this campaign. Watch the recording of the Cuba fringe here.
Education Under Occupation Speakers at the International Department’s official fringe hosted jointly with the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) and Defence for Children International Palestine (DCIP) were Sawsan Bastawy, UK Advocacy Officer, DCIP; Ayed Abu Eqtaish, West Bank staff member DCIP; Feras Njoom, International Secretary, General Union of Palestinian Teachers; Louise Regan, NEU National Officer and Vice Chair, Palestine Solidarity Campaign; and Rana Shihadah, member of NEU delegation to Palestine. The meeting was chaired by Gawain Little, chair of the NEU International Committee.
The fringe heard about the many barriers to education and rights that Palestinian children face. It also heard from Amber and Grace Williams, daughters of the late Nina Franklin, a former NUT President whose Memorial Fund recently facilitated the opening of new classrooms at the Al Majaz School in Hebron. Watch the recording of the Education Under Occupation fringe here.