Burston Strike School Rally 2010

This year’s Burston Strike School Rally will take place on Sunday 5th September.

It will feature the following speakers:

  • Tony Benn
  • Chris Keates, NASUWT general secretary
  • Len McCluskey, UNITE assistant general secretary

And music from:

  • RED FLAGS
  • Diss School Brass Band

And

Session chairs will include: Teresa Mackay, UNITE regional organiser for women, race and equalities and  Peter Medhurst (retired TGWU regional industrial organiser)

An annual rally is held each September in the Norfolk village of Burston to remember the Strike School.  This school represented the ‘longest strike in history’ when pupils from Burston school went on strike to protest at the sacking of their teachers; Tom and Kitty Higdon.

Tom and Kitty had arrived at the school, finding it unfit for purpose.  The school building was cold and damp,and Higdons set about putting this right.  Kitty lit the schoolroom’s fire to dry the childrens’ wet clothes.  This was, apparently an act of defiance, resulting in criticism from the school management – she had not asked permission first!

Tom and Kitty were also socialists, committed, through education, to encouraging children to imagine possibilities they never imagined they might have.  They were popular with children and local parents, and they saw attendance at the school increase.  This, in turn meant that Tom and Kitty were less popular with local landowners – they saw the importance of child labour more than education.

And so, in short, they were sacked.  The pupils though, were not having this, and went on strike, effectively creating a new school.

Information on the Burston Strike School rally 2010 supplied by Shaun Jeffery

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8 Responses

  1. [...] with Tony Benn, Red Flags, and Ian Saville’s Magic for Socialists – An annual rally is held each September in the Norfolk village of Burston to remember the Strike School. This school represented the ‘longest strike in history’ when pupils from Burston school went on strike to protest at the sacking of their teachers; Tom and Kitty Higdon. The pupils though, were not having their free-thinking teachers sacked, and went on strike, effectively creating a new school. https://educationandsociety.wordpress.com/2010/06/09/burston-strike-school-rally-2010/ [...]

  2. We are booking a minibus so need the start and finish time please?

  3. [...] be at Burston Strike School rally on Sunday handing out union sponsorship proposals and generally agitating the left to show more [...]

  4. [...] members will join with the Norwich ‘Justice For Ian Tomlinson Family’ Campaign at the Burston Strike School Rally on Sunday to raise awareness of the issues and to agitate ‘the left’ to try and get [...]

  5. As for the picture accompanying this post, I have no idea where it has gone. It was a great day though.

  6. [...] she helped organise a strike in protest over the sacking of teachers, Tom and Kitty Higdon.  A previous post from last year gives a little more detail of the [...]

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