Students and workers at Newcastle College have won at least a postponement of cuts. At the beginning of 2011 the college announced plans to cut 171 frontline jobs, 17% of the workforce. Students set up SOS (Save Our Staff) to support lecturers.
We began with a banner drop at one of the college’s open evenings to raise the profile.
Management tried scare tactics to prevent us taking other action. But we still managed to organise a successful walkout.
On 24 March the lecturers’ union UCU organised a march from the college to the university, and yet again there was a great turnout of students.
On 12 April the UCU went on official strike.
The management refused to give permission to the UCU to have a meeting on college grounds. But the meeting was simply moved to the grass just off the campus site.
The meeting took two votes of no confidence in the senior management and the announcement that all the campaign had pushed back the cuts that were originally planned to happen in May to the end of July.