For what is expected to be one of the biggest rallies for years on 6 March in Glasgow (see What’s On), the largest teachers’ union in Scotland, the Educational Institute of Scotland and the Musicians’ Union are collaborating to denounce the raft of cuts to education budgets that are steadily coming into force in all local authorities. Police and Glasgow City Council this week insisted that the route be changed to cope with the numbers projected. As seen throughout Britain, teachers, college lecturers and parents are angry that children are to be made to suffer directly because of the financial failure of capitalism.
Ronnie Smith, EIS General Secretary, said people “will not allow their education system to come under attack as part of a misguided cost-cutting agenda – cutting back on education in order to prop up failed financial institutions is simply not acceptable”. The £30 billion local authority spending budget is going to be cut by up to 14 per cent, damaging standards achieved over decades.
One of many examples where those involved – mainly young people – have fought against this trend is the campaign to save the much-loved residential educational facility at Castle Toward near Dunoon. For nearly 60 years it hosted outdoor activities, art and orchestral summer courses, only to face being sold off for a golf course, hotel and luxury flats. However, a vigorous campaign on Facebook has gathered nearly 5000 supporters. A march through Dunoon was actually prohibited by the Council last month, but the campaign is well on the way to success in forcing the re-opening of the institution. Many of these campaigners intend to be at the rally on 6 March to highlight their cause among many others.