Education Officer’s Report – Week 12, Sem 2, 2016

Liam Carrigan & Dylan Griffiths

Considering the seemingly unstoppable neolibralisation and corporatization of Sydney University and the mainstream narrative of student apathy to activism it’s pretty humbling to once again sign off on another year of incredible education activism. Since 2012 this campus has been the scene of the last vestiges of radical student struggle. We have stood in solidarity with staff, struggled against fee deregulation and fought against the restructuring of our University.

2016 begun with our ‘Insipid’ poster campaign that called out the hypocrisy of the University’s marketing campaign. We worked with the NTEU to hold a rally against the restructure on March 16th and oppose the cuts in senate representatives. We have opposed the presence of Liberals on campus, protesting Simon Birmingham in with Fisher library and opposing the University awarding an honorary doctorate to the very undeserving John Howard. With the scrapping of the start up scholarship, two billion in cuts to Universities and lowering of the HECS repayment threshold we worked in conjunction with the National Union of Students to organize student resistance. Education activists were also involved in the organizing of the inaugural Radical Education Week.

By far the most significant campaign of the year was ‘Let SCA Stay’, a blueprint for opposing the restructure and student radicalism. The attempts by the University to destroy this community of artists sparked a mass campaign that included hundreds storming the senate; the most visually striking action EVER at the Archibald prize and a hugely successful student strike on August 17th.

Oh and we saved simple extensions so remember to thank the SRC every time you use one!
As the NTEU enters the EBA period students must be ready to stand in solidarity with staff if they go on strike as we did in 2013. Staff teaching conditions are after all student-learning conditions. The fight to save SCA must continue as they attempt to move them onto main campus and sack staff in the process. We must continue the fight for free education and fee deregulation.

Dylan and myself are proud to have continued the tradition of an unapologetically radical education department this year. Thanks to our comrades, families and every student who involved themselves even in the smallest way in the fight for a better education.
Never forget, study, be silent and die. Question authority, fight the system and oppose the liberals at all turns. Be radical and never let anyone make you feel bad about it.