Welcome to the website of Susan M. Coles, Artist & Arts, Creativity & Educational Consultant.

Posted in Education Education Education

June 30th 2011 and the UK sees the first teacher strike for a long time. This time, supported by other public workers and affecting a wide part of the country. Yes, it’s inconvenient but yes it will be necessary.

The government appear to have made their decisions, and all of their decisions are about reducing spending, and all of the problems with spending lie with the banks and capitalist structures which encourage them to play with our money and our stability.

Pay more, work longer, get less. Will MP’s pensions be treated the same way ? Doubt it.

Mr Gove has appeared on television today and suggested that parents pop into school and help out on Thursday. Well, it’s such an easy job isn’t it ? Anyone can do it…or so it seems.

Mr Gove wrote a letter to headteachers with suggestions for putting children into large groups and bringing in some crowd control and babysitters from outside of school. Well, it’s such an easy job isn’t it ? Anyone can do it…or so it seems.

But for me, June 30th should also be memorable for another reason. We have our termly NEATEN meeting (North East Art Teacher/Educationalist network) at the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art. We will be gathering together a large group who are concerned at the way that art and arts education is being treated in educational reforms and with funding cuts for the Arts in the UK.
Link to details of meeting

Come and listen to teachers, artists, lecturers, art students, advisers, school leaders, exam board reps, subject association reps, MPs and whoever else would like to celebrate the power of the arts in our schools and in lives.

We start at 4:30 but, if you are not at work (is there a strike on?) come earlier and have time to chat and maybe see some of the new exhibitions.

Come and celebrate some of the good work going in schools, meet other people, enjoy the views down river, share a cuppa and a point of view.

Come and see why teaching art can be the best job in the world…(possibly not until you are 68 though and lacking the drive and energy which such passionate teachers require!)

We did invite Mr Gove to this meeting some time ago, unfortunately he may be busy on Thursday as he will be, no doubt, popping into his neighbourhood school to do some teaching and crowd control. Well, it’s such an easy job isn’t it ? Anyone can do it…or so it seems.



4633 days ago

Could hardly believe it, he thinks teachers babysit all day. I’m striking. If I lived in the north then I would come to your meeting. I live in the south west. Good luck to you all up there.


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