The most important things to do when you first start your campaign are to communicate your concerns to the school leadership and make contact with other concerned parents and teachers and with people who can help you.
- Write to the Chair of Governors, the Headteacher and individual Governors to express your concerns and to ask for full and proper consultation. See the Academy Consultation page for more information on what to write.
- Write also to your Local Authority Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Families to ask for their support in ensuring the schools conducts a full and proper consultation.
Contact people who can give you help and advice
- Contact the Anti Academies Alliance,
- Contact teaching unions such as NASUWT, NUT, ATL,
- Contact local activists eg. anti-cuts groups
- Contact councillors and MPs.
Contact other parents
At Primary school it is easy to meet other parents at the school gates, but at Secondary school it is much more difficult and reaching parents will probably be the biggest challenge of your campaign.
- Ask the school to send out a mailing on your behalf. they are very unlikely to agree to this. Ask them anyway.
- Talk to any parents you know
- Contact the PTA, there will probably be a PTA contact on the school website.
- You may need to leaflet school events such as parents’ evenings (check the calendar on the school website to see what is coming up).
- You could also consider leafleting pupils as they leave school and leafleting parents at primary feeder schools.
- Ask local news websites, area blogs etc to publicise your campaign and publish a contact email address.
- Attend local community group meetings and events.
Regional union offices eg. NASUWT, NUT should be able to put you in touch with union reps at the school.
Arrange a meeting
- Invite union reps, parents, Anti academies campaigners and anyone else who has shown an interest in your campaign.
- Identify the issues that are relevant to your school.
- Agree the next steps, who will do what and when.
- Have a signing in sheet and make sure you set a date for the next meeting.
Start a Facebook group or blog
It helps if people can join and follow the campaign online and this is also a really good way to engage with students and to keep the issues alive in the minds and discussions of the Governing Body.
- Publish everything relevant to the campaign, eg questions asked and the answers given, communications from the school, updates on the school website, Academies in the news.
Stay positive – don’t be disheartened if your group is small
You may only have one or two parents to begin with, or it might even just be you most of the way through. Most people will not get actively involved even if they do support the cause. This is just the way it is. You can still achieve a lot and your campaign will grow in time.
“Never doubt that a small group of committed citizens can change the
world, indeed it is the only thing that ever has”
Margaret Mead, Social Anthropologist
(Quote pinched from a CASE publication on running a campaign)
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