Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Supply teachers

Supply teachers have always seemed to me to be the SAS of the teaching profession, parachuted in when there are gaps in the front line, taking classes where the teacher is over-stressed and finding out in five minutes *why* the teacher is over-stressed!

Conference Motions should have gone out last term and should be available on thehttp://teachers.org.uk website soon.

There is a resolution on supply and agency teachers on the agenda in the name of the executive. It has some pious objectives:
"1) Mount a campaign to build awareness of routes to permanent status for casually employed teachers.
2) Develop campaigning and negotiating strategies to encourage the re-establishment of local authority-wide supply pools.
3) Develop strategies to protect teachers who are not directly employed by local authorities or schools in order that they may access equal rights to pay, pension and other benefits.
4) Build a campaign to promote the employment of supply teachers to provide cover in schools.
We need to find ways of translating these fine sentiments into positive help for our supply and agency colleagues here and now.

Parents must be concerned that their children are not being taught by qualified teachers and their support could be very useful in putting on pressure to ensure "a qualified teacher for every child".

Jack London's book, "The Iron Heel"

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Bush's punishment by Muntadar al-Zaidi

I can see why people think Muntadar al-Zaidi is a hero when
the puppet government in Iraq are such pussies. The brave
security services are beating up a defenceless man in
custody. And they do it to grovel to the American occupying

Since the war millions of Iraqis are still waiting for the
electricity and water supplies to be restored to normal. It
is hardly surprising they experience frustration and any
sign of resistance to Bush is welcomed.

The politicians stay well away from Iraqis, keeping
themselves locked up in what Rajiv Chandrasekaran called "The
Emerald Palace" of the Green Zone. So it was only because
Bush wanted the media to see him on his farewell tour that
Muntadar had a chance to strike a small blow on behalf of
the women and children whose blood is on Bush's hands.

I don't condone throwing shoes but compared to bombing
civilians, the massacre at Fallujah, torture at Abu Ghraib
and Guantanamo, Bush's punishment is mild.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Jewish school-leavers refuse to support oppression in Palestine

Name: Udi Nir
Age: 19
Location: Tel-Aviv
Why I am one of the Shministim:
“I will not lend my own hand to the occupation and to acts that contradict my most basic values: human rights, democracy and the personal responsibility each and every human being bears towards fellow human beings.”
Sentence: Aug. 21st - Sept. 7th 2008 (18 days)

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Torture counterproductive in Iraq

Democracy Now! interviewed a former special intelligence operations officer who led an interrogations team in Iraq two years ago. His nonviolent interrogation methods led Special Forces to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the head of al-Qaeda in Iraq. He has written a new book, "How to Break a Terrorist: The US Interrogators Who Used Brains, Not Brutality, to Take Down the Deadliest Man in Iraq."

The publication date for the book was delayed for six weeks due to the Pentagon’s vetting of it. The soldier wrote it under the pseudonym, Matthew Alexander, for security reasons. He says the US military’s use of torture is responsible for the deaths of thousands of US soldiers by inspiring foreign fighters to kill Americans.

Click here to read more