Comment on Labour's National Education Service draft charter

Kevin Courtney, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union comments on Labour’s draft Charter for a National Education Service.

He said:

“We welcome the Charter and the idea that a high quality and properly funded education system is vital to the lives and futures of children and young people and the societies in which they live.

“This Charter is a ray of light, illuminating the possibilities for a new education system, after years in which schools and colleges have experienced a narrow curriculum, a punitive system of accountability and a lowering of educational horizons. 

“It recognises professionalism. It avoids the language of blame. It commits to the well-being of education workers and learners. It pledges to integrate education with social and economic policy, so that schools and colleges are no longer expected to carry most of the burden of transforming lives. It envisages a system restored to democratic control. These principles could fundamentally change for the better our educational system.

“The National Education Union looks forward to playing its full part in the conversation on the Charter.  In doing so, it will seek to advance principles which include:

  • the important conversation about how schools and colleges can work with other institutions to lessen the inequalities which disfigure our society;
  • the principles of the Charter must be underpinned by long-term funding commitments so that all the services needed by children and their families are fully funded;
  • the importance of well trained and qualified professionals, with time and space for continuing their professional development throughout their careers as a key principle on which NEU would build its vision for education. 

“We look forward to working with Labour on a vision for curriculum and assessment, which can genuinely support the progress of the many.”

ENDS

Press release
26 September 2017