Tell us your experience of stress in schools

Hey everyone!

TSOS as a campaign has a lot of demands for its goal, but as enough of you may think, it’s somewhat vague about most of them, but that’s because we want to collect demands from the public and those who’re experiencing stress in studying so that the campaign is built in the right way.

So, speaking for other school students and even ex-school students, how about you write an article or a couple of paragraphs or just simply a comment on this thread telling us your general experience of stress you’ve been facing in the school system, the effects/impacts of it and what could be done to change it.

You don’t have to tell us anything you don’t feel comfortable saying, just as enough as possible about the stresses you’ve faced.

We’d love to hear a lot from all of you, as not only can it help to rid education of its stressful elements but create a much better and broader alternative.

Email us for questions: tsos.socialism@outlook.com

In solidarity, TSOS

New petition on mental health to sign and share

Hi everyone,

Just found a petition online called ‘We need an urgent inquiry into the mental health impact of the new GCSEs, SATs and the exam factory culture in schools’

Here’s the link to sign: https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/we-need-an-urgent-inquiry-into-the-mental-health-impact-of-the-new-gcses-sats-and-the-exam-factory-culture-in-schools .

Please please sign and share if you can. Education should set you up for life, not bring you down forever!!!

Strikes against academisation in Maze Hill

Hi everyone.

Just to let you all know, tomorrow until July 12, all at 7am, is a picket line at The John Roan NEU, Maze Hill, south-east London, against forced academisation. 5 more days of strike action planned to STOP the forced academisation and overturn the unfair OFSTED inspection of The John Roan School; the oldest school in the country, 1677, which is still comprehensive.

They are now beginning to gain the attention of national media, so an even bigger presence at the next strike would really make an impact. So, please please attend if you can and share it if you wish!!

Education is to be for the many, not for the few!!!

NHS demo tomorrow

Hi everyone,

Just to let you all know, tomorrow, at 12pm in Portland Place, central London, is the national demonstration marking the 70th anniversary of the National Health Service (NHS). The march will continue until Parliament Square, via Regent Street and Whitehall.

I – Joe Booth – and others, including Jon Ashworth are part of a deputation on it delivering a petition to Theresa May. The petition is here: https://t.co/KDvhQxa8F?amp=1.

Please please, attend and share if you can. Tory attacks on the NHS are a damage to both our health and our lives!

Public meeting a week on Saturday

Hi everyone,

Just to let you all know, there is a public meeting on Saturday 7th July 2018 at 2pm until 5pm at Marcon Court Community Hall, Hackney Central. It is organised so we can all talk about how stressful education has become and the ways forward in campaigning. It’s a public event so everyone is welcome. But we don’t want the young people attending to be outnumbered by the adults coming, as it will be structured around a friendly and welcoming environment.

The Facebook event is here: https://www.facebook.com/events/213954136068438/.

Please please attend if you can, and share it around social media and elsewhere.

 

In solidarity, Joe Booth, JoePLBooth@gmail.com

 

Taking the Stress Out of SATs

Kids as young as ten are being stressed out by the pressure of SATs, the Standard Assessment Tests that feed the government obsession with scores and ranking, but do nothing to help our education. Year 6 – the final year of primary education – could be a time of positive learning and preparation for next steps, but instead has been made into a boot camp in test-passing.

With SATs making kids scared of failing, we are glad to see some schools making the effort to reassure their pupils that SATs do not determine who they are as a person.

We would like to see SATs scrapped altogether, but until they are, we are glad to see letters like this one, from West Park Academy in Darlington to its pupils.

westparkacademy

Report of the last NEU/NUT conference

Hey everyone,

Here is a written report of the last conference of the National Education Union (NEU), and everything regarding support for the TSOS campaign.

 

The last National Union of Teachers’ conference: all words and no action to Take the Stress Out of Studying!
The last ever National Union of Teachers’ (NUT) conference took place over the Easter weekend, 29th March to 3 April 2018. From next year the union is part of a new union formed with the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL), which will be called the National Education Union (NEU).
The NEU will be the largest education union and the NUT has been the largest teachers’ union and certainly the most radical. This makes it one of the key arenas where we can forward the struggle to ‘Take the Stress Out of Studying’ (TSOS).
Several of the NUT branches (which are called divisions) passed a motion to go to conference to support TSOS. However, disappointingly, it was not prioritised by enough divisions for the motion to be taken at conference. Despite this the NUT continues to make all the right noises on student stress. They regularly note the terrible affects on students (and education workers!) mental health of the current education system. They support campaigns called ‘More than a Score’ and issue reports called ‘Exam Factories’.
I personally believe that all testing in schools is unnecessary. It is about labelling the students and making ‘winners’ and ‘losers’ for our unequal society not about learning, it also tells teachers nothing they do not know already. Teachers under the pressure of having to justify themselves to management and management having to justify the school to Ofsted and the government, value test outcomes far above any other measures of the students welfare or learning. The pressure passes from government to management to teacher to student. It is particularly disgusting in primary schools where children as young as 5 and 6 now can face up to 6 weeks testing out of a 39 week academic year. As a primary school teacher and a parent of primary school children myself, I consider this abuse. The acceptance of this as abuse is widely held by delegates at the NUT conference. Now the government is suggesting testing 4 year olds when they enter school, baseline testing!
But, despite a strong and vocal minority in conference, which calls for the union to take decisive action; firstly by boycotting all testing in primary schools, the conference voted to commit to little more than consulting its members and a campaign conference. That is essentially the same strategy the union has had for years. The most basic thing we can do to stop the abuse and regain our dignity as a union of education workers is to ballot to stop administering the abuse. The campaign to make that a reality will continue into the new union.

Duncan Morrison,
Assistant Divisional Secretary of Lewisham Division NEU (NUT), personal capacity