Jo Schofield

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Public Education Day 2020

Public schools are at the heart of our community. They are places full of hope, of learning and – most importantly – of equity and inclusion.

On Public Education Day – and every day – we applaud the vital work of all those who contribute their labour to the public system. Their tireless commitment ensures the best possible outcome for children, families and community.

But public education cannot thrive on commitment alone – we need stronger funding, decent pay and adequate hours for all workers in public education, and an end to contracting out and casualization. We need schools to be places of learning and community support – not “quasi-businesses” forced to commercialise school premises (and staff time) in order to raise much needed funds for essential equipment.

Public schools have always been a mainstay in the fight against inequality in Australia. Our system has proved resilient and strong. Much of that strength is due to the enduring values of the public education workforce and their solidarity with one another in union.

Our society is both richer and stronger because of those values – of collectivism, equality, justice and care for one another.

Today we stand in solidarity with everyone involved in our public education system, and say thank you for all that you do.

Jo Schofield, President of the United Workers Union