Save Sydney College of the Arts claims first scalp

SCA students and supporters storm the newly refurbushed business school to highlight the Sydney University's uneven funding priorities.

The campaign to Save Sydney College of the Arts (SCA) has forced the Dean of the College to resign. It was a major demand of the fight to retain Sydney University’s unique, studio-based arts college in the heart of Callan Park — the jewel of Sydney's inner west.

Colin Rhodes announced his resignation on September 13. He will be replaced by SCA teacher Margaret Harris. 

The announcement came as the student occupation of SCA's administration building entered its third week — the longest occupation against management dictates, in USYD history. 

The occupation and Let SCA Stay campaign keeps gathering support. Jack Mundey, former Builders Labourers Federation secretary and leader of the Green Bans, came to visit the occupation on September 12. The same day, the Public Service Association pledged its support to the occupation and donated $1000 

Sydney University may have given in to the campaign's demand for the Dean to resign, but has not retreated on its plan to sack 60% of SCA staff and forcibly move the college to the overcrowded main campus in Camperdown.

A looming deadline for the campaign is October 24. Staff have until this date to present their “expressions of interest” in voluntary redundancy, notes Honi Soit.

SCA student Thandi Bethune said: “Teachers and students are starting to band together. We will win because we are an unstoppable force that management will have to bend to. Our campaign is notching up a gear with an on September 22 at Callan Park."

Activists are planning a rally at Sydney University on October 5 to reiterate that SCA must stay at Callan Park.

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