In November & December last year I took 2 days out each week to campaign for our NHS services which are facing closure. The campaign team needed a mathematician with political experience of and the ability to change the minds of experts.
Then I was asked if I would stand in the Copeland by-election. I did this to try to get our local issues on the agenda.
I have substantial political experience from my years during the coalition government when I worked hard to challenge poor education policy. I’m also an experienced local councillor.
Politics is not an easy thing to get involved with when you’re a teacher. It can affect your employment and it can have a substantial impact on your family. And its difficult too. Learning to influence policy is a bit like learning to program machine code because simple programs like Word aren’t working – it’s frustrating at first, it takes time to learn how to do it and it’s annoying becuase you feel it shouldn’t be necessary. But it’s essential that experienced people from education do get involved if we’re going to connect policy with our world and, ultimately (hopefully), devolve most policy decisions in education to professionals again. If you are thinking about getting involved and you would like my help to understand the world of politics please do contact me – I would like to help you if I can. I don’t care which party you’re interested in joining. All our parties need people with real experience in education.
Politics is tough but you can do a great deal of good. And it can be liberating, exhilerating and exciting. You get to see more of the world as it really is and some of the people you’ll meet will inspire you. And if you’re at ease taking the flack challenging kids give you every day you’ll probably really enjoy the rough and tumble.
I’m back at work now and loving that.
Rebecca. March 2017.
Picture: Recording the Radio Cumbria Debate for the Copeland By-Election.