2016 - A Year of Change (It’s all been happening)

(To the tune of Good King Wenceslas) by Richard Raftery


A Union Rep stood up and spoke
at the staff do in December
‘What a year it’s been,’ said she,
‘Let’s look back and remember
Everything is different now
so many fluctuations
The world is turning upside down
causing trepidation.’

‘First we had the Brexit thing
in that there referendum
All the posh boys swept away
with a few exemptions
Nicki Morgan kicked aside
with her Govish scheming
In her shoes another stepped
A certain Justine Greening.’

‘Suddenly the language changed
around academisation
“No!” she said, “that’s not the way,
We need a new sensation.
Yes that’s it we’ll all glance back,”
(Into the past she squinted)
“We’re looking at the grammar schools
Through our specs rose-tinted.”

“It won’t be like it was then,
no merciless rejection
Lots of choice for boys and girls
despite this new selection
Fear not we’ll get it right,
sparing you the detail
Just like in that Brexit thing
we of course shall prevail.”

‘Then we looked across the pond
such strange things going on there
Electing a brash president
a barking multi-billionaire
But of course he’s on our side
make no mistake about it
He often tells us this himself
so there’s no need to doubt it.’

‘Back at home that workload thing
DfE pulled no punches
Said that teachers worked too much
even through their lunches
Squandered hours could be saved
no more deeper marking
Time to bin your coloured pens
try to do more talking.’

‘The same it goes for planning too
the culture was lambasted
Time to undo what you do
too much time is wasted
Finally the penny dropped
and now they all agree
Workload is destructive
it drives us to our knees.’

‘But that’s not the end of it
in this wondrous new age
One big change is coming soon
heading straight down our way
The NUT and ATL
plan amalgamation
One union for everyone
throughout education.’ 

‘Never was the time more right
or the need much greater
Now we should not hesitate
or put it off till later
So union members please take note
as this strange year closes
Unity is the only way
to fight for bread and roses’.     

Richard Raftery