Socialist Worker

Unison conference: teaching assistants

Issue No. 2107

A debate on teaching assistants heard a series of shocking accounts of management bullying.

Paul Holmes from Kirklees, West Yorkshire, said most schools were “run on fear” by the head teacher.

“They could be renamed ‘The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe’ because the calls for help I get are from cupboards and wardrobes,” he said. 

Sheila Hemingway, from Leeds, agreed that many staff were intimidated by “demon headmasters”.

“Support staff in schools are terrified,” she said. “They’re working some of the longest unpaid hours in the country, and they are scared to say anything because of the repercussions.”

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