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UCU Strike! Students and staff unite!

by James Moran, Birmingham Socialist Students and UCU member The University and College Union (UCU) who represent academic staff at Universities, including casualised and post graduate teaching staff, have called a two day strike on the 25th and 26th May! Their central demands include a 5% pay rise and action on the continuing gender pay [...]

Say yes to a fighting NUS

This year’s NUS conference could potentially mark an important turning point for the student movement. The election of Malia Bouattia, who ousted the right-wing incumbent, marked an important shift towards the left. But as well as electing a more left-wing leadership, NUS conference also endorsed a fighting strategy for opposing austerity in education. Most significantly, [...]

Urgent: Solidarity needed with South African students

The enormous #feesmustfall movement that swept South Africa in the autumn has inspired students around the world and was able to score a substantial victory against the ANC government. Below is a letter written by student socialists in South Africa, describing the #outsourcingmustfall campaign which has developed out of this. The letter is a request [...]

Fight the cuts at Birmingham University

by Birmingham Socialist Students On Wednesday the 16th of March, the second consultation about the restructuring of the Birmingham Modern Languages department took place. The first consultation meeting attracted only a handful of students after they were given just 24 hours notice from the University. Yet on the back of a one-thousand-strong petition in support [...]

Stop bombing Syria

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Student day of action 9 Dec: See here for details of local events
National demonstration: Sat, 12 Dec, Central London

The bombing in Syria has begun. Across Britain, millions of people have been sickened by the rush to war. Lots of us are especially angry at Labour MPs who spoke in favour of dropping bombs and against their leader, Jeremy Corbyn. This military action will lead to the deaths of many innocent men, women and children. Even more will also be forced to flee the region, worsening the refugee crisis.
More bombs won’t stop ISIS. In fact British intervention in the Middle East – including the recent wars in Iraq, Libya, and Afghanistan – has played a part in sowing the seeds of the deadly chaos engulfing Syria and the rise of ISIS. This war is really about the Tories’ wish to maintain Britain’s ‘prestige’ as a world power. It will also be a bonanza for the big business arms companies, whose profits have already increased as a result of the vote in Parliament. » Read more..

Fight for education: day of action – 25 November

As Osborne announces a new round of savage cuts in his autumn statement, join Socialist Students for protests around the country to defend education.

We say:

  • Abolish fees – tax the rich to fund free education
  • Stop all cuts, privatisation and marketisation- Fight the HE green paper and kick big business out
  • Living grants for all college and university students
  • Make our campuses zero-hour contract free zones – all workers deserve secure jobs paid a minimum wage of at least £10 an hour
  • Cap and slash rents, university accommodation must be afoordable for all
  • For education that is fully funded, publicly owned, democratically run and universally free at all levels – a socialist education system
  • A socialist society for the 99% free from all exploitation, war and oppression

List of protests (more to follow):

London
Protest outside Downing St
1 pm
Contact: Helen 07540189052

Liverpool
Campaign stall
12-2pm
At the back of the student guild
Contact: Hugh 07769 611320

Huddersfield
Free Education Demo
12.15pm in UTC
Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/180366445642158/

Leeds
Momentum protest
5pm at Victoria Gardens
LS2 3AD

Coventry
Protest 5:00pm
Broadgate
CV1 1NF
Contact: Lenny 07530 429441

Warwick
Protest 1pm
The Piazza
CV4 7AL
Contact: Lenny 07530 429441

Cardiff
5.30 PM
Nye Bevan Statue
Queen St

Socialist Students joins free education demo

by Jonny Dickens, Goldsmiths Socialist Students

Just two days after the ‘Free Education’ student demonstration on 4 November took place in central London, the government planned more devastating attacks on Higher Education which were outlined in a widely criticised ‘green paper’. Perhaps the most significant change is the plan to remove the £9,000 tuition fee cap for top universities.
Of course this is damaging for students who will likely already struggle to pay the current debt for university, but it also means that higher education is at risk of being split up into a two-tier system. » Read more..

Join the Socialist Students block on 4 November

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Please join the Socialist Students contingent on the national student demonstration. Assembling at 12pm on the corner of Keppel St and Malet St.

Fees must fall. This slogan, the rallying cry of the mass student movement that has swept South Africa, should now ring out on the streets of Britain. As students gather to protest in London this week, we can draw confidence and inspiration from those engaged in the struggle for free and decent education worldwide.

» Read more..

Yorkshire students protest against fees and cuts

by Amy Cousens, Leeds Beckett Socialist Students

Around 100 Leeds students stopped city centre traffic on 24 October as we marched for free education. A rally kicked off the demonstration with speakers from the GMB union, the Green Party who pledged to support the campaign and a passionate speech from Socialist Students’ Lilly Green. The reception from the public was fantastic. To end the rally Sarah Gilborn, vice president for welfare at Leeds Beckett University spoke on how student leaders need to contribute to the fight-back and the secretary of Leeds Fight for Free Education, Socialist Party member Mary Finch gave a fitting closing speech. A meeting afterwards was packed out with 33 attendees and there were lots of contributions on how we practically go forward with the fight.

Build a mass student movement – join protests this autumn

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Socialist Students statement on the upcoming student demonstration on 4 November and building our movement beyond it

The Tories’ general election win has been followed by a summer of protest and resistance. Hundreds of thousands marched against austerity in June, a display of anger matched in the recent mass demonstration outside Tory conference. Tens of thousands of young and working class people signed up to vote for Jeremy Corbyn in a wave of enthusiasm for left-wing ideas, seizing the opportunity to strike a blow against pro-austerity New Labour. » Read more..

Enthusiasm for socialism at freshers’ fairs

Socialist Students was present at over 75 freshers’ fairs over the last month. These reports give a flavour of the excellent response to Socialist ideas.

Leeds

At Leeds University, we signed up 81 students, gave out 500 leaflets and sold ten copies of Socialist Students’ magazine Megaphone on just our first day! Socialist Students in Leeds had one of our best ever freshers interventions this year. 68 people attended our first event of the year, a film showing of Pride. Ray Goodspeed, one of the founding members of Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners (LGSM) spoke at the very successful event. There’s new enthusiasm for socialist ideas among students and young people following the Labour leadership election victory of Jeremy Corbyn. Many students who joined our society said they were doing so because Socialist Students stood head and shoulders above the other groups on campus. We’ve campaigned against the student loan privatisation, run campaigns against sexism and won the women’s rep position in Leeds Beckett Student Union. Now we’re leading the Leeds For Free Education campaign, which is organising a demonstration on 24 October.

Mary Finch

 

Cardiff

Socialist Students made an appeal to Cardiff freshers to join the campaign to end the refugee crisis. Even the dazzling opportunities of freshers week couldn’t distract students from demonstrating their solidarity. The society set up campaign stalls both inside and outside societies’ fairs and called on every student who walked past to sign the petition to defend the right to asylum. The generosity and solidarity that we tapped into shames the capitalist governments of Europe who have done everything in their power to block refugees from getting the help they need. £100 was contributed over the course of two days, helping to pay for material to get the word out and other campaign expenses. The outpouring of sympathy has very clear, concrete aims – to fight to get the needs of desperate people what they need. But it also has another meaning: it is a protest against a system that puts profits before the satisfaction of the basic needs of ordinary people.

Ross Saunders

Swansea

Swansea Socialist Students kicked off the year with a successful stall at the student union’s freshers fair, the best for years. We spent two full days distributing over 750 leaflets, selling 46 copies of the Socialist, and signing up almost 90 students. This was followed by a well-attended meeting where we planned our first protest.

Gareth Bromhall

 

Sunderland

Four members of the Socialist Party attended Sunderland University freshers fair. There was an enthusiastic interest in discussing the ideas of socialism as shown by the 62 who signed up to Socialist Students. Also, 26 copies of the Socialist were sold and many expressed an interest in joining the Socialist Party. We spoke to a Colombian student who signed our petition against tuition fees and couldn’t believe that a “rich country like Britain” charges its citizens for education, whereas in her “poor” home country she had completed two university degrees free of charge.

Peter Rippon

 

 

 

Smash Tory Austerity: Demonstrate at Tory Conference

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Join the Student block at the Tory Party Conference Demo in Manchester
Sunday, 4 October
Meet behind the Socialist Students banner on the student block
@ Whitworth Park on Oxford Road

Fight Austerity in Education

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by Claire Laker-Mansfield

Socialist Students national organiser

Education is a privilege. At least it was for Cameron and Osborne: Eton, Oxford and then the well-trodden path to the Tory front bench. How different an experience to that of the average young person in austerity Britain and students arriving on campus this year?

Student debt, super-expensive housing and the prospect of graduating to low-paid and insecure work will be on the minds of many. » Read more..

Fantastic Victory for Jeremy Corbyn!

Corbyn

Join us to discuss the way forward on campuses around the country

After Corbyn win, what next?

The battle for an anti-austerity party is only beginning. Jeremy Corbyn has been swept to victory on a wave of enthusiasm for anti-cuts and left-wing ideas.  Free education, a £10 minimum wage, an end to privatisation: these are all demands that Socialist Students has raised and campaigned over recent years. But Corbyn’s campaign has given an expression to the wide support that exists for these ideas within society. This upsurge has dealt a huge blow to the cosy pro-austerity consensus that has dominated mainstream politics. » Read more..