I wouldn’t have thought I was a radical but recent events have made me question myself. I will admit that I’m passionate, I’m excitable, I’m enthusiastic, I’m a fighter and I’m determined.
Today I’m also adding the word radical to that description as I’m taking industrial action and am on strike for 24 hours due to the NSW State Government deciding to outsource education provision to external providers. This was announced in May 2016 and I have written a few posts on this topic, as well as TV and radio interviews and Buzz Feed interviews.
It’s funny that throughout my years of blogging I have had a rule not to talk about my job as an educator in a correctional centre. Since the announcement in May I have relaxed my view on talking about my job and have gone in boots and all, mainly to educate others to what’s happening in our state’s gaols and to support my colleagues. It also helps me cope with what’s happening.
To bring you up to speed – fully qualified teachers are currently employed in our state’s gaols to educate inmates prior to them being released. This reform aims to remove those teachers and replace them with clerical staff who will not require any education qualifications or teaching experience. The bulk of education will then be outsourced to external providers. This is wrong on so many levels and you can go to my other posts to read more if you are interested. By the end of this year we will be gone along with all our experience, in my case 22 years.
I’m continuing the fight on principle and the concern that this reform could be the harbinger of future changes to teaching in other institutions. Just think if ‘someone’ decides that school teachers don’t really need to be so highly qualified, where will we be then?
So what does a radical educator of 22 years experience do on her day of industrial action? Well I’m glad you asked. She sits around in her Doctor Who onesie, drinking cups of tea, listening to colleagues being interviewed on radio, sending tweets, facebook posts, blogging and tuning into the protest rally at the prescribed hour, all while watching the rain tumbling down outside. Unfortunately I’m 600km away from the rally in Sydney so can’t make it in person, but I’ll be there in spirit.
So if that sounds like a radical person to you, then I’ve now joined the radical ranks.
(I’m also the Vice President of Corrective Services Teachers Association and Teachers Federation Union rep for my centre)
Other posts you might like:
This post is written in response to the very timely and highly suitable Daily Post prompt of the day – Radical