Stourbridge teachers' strike action over academy plans

Published on Thursday, 31 January 2013 09:30
Posted by Vicki Mitchem

Members of the NASUWT, the largest teachers' union, will hold the first of a series of strikes today at Redhill School, Stourbridge, as part of a sustained campaign against plans to convert the school into an academy.

Members believe a conversion would be a backward step, leading to a decline in educational standards for pupils as well as an erosion of vital and hard- fought-for safeguards for teachers.

The school's governing body voted against the proposal in 2010 and has yet to make a final decision on conversion.

Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, said:

"There is no educational or financial imperative to justify converting Redhill School to an academy.

"Redhill is a highly successful school. It provides high standards of education. The proposal to convert to academy status has already been considered and rejected and yet once again pupils, staff and parents are facing the turbulence of uncertainty.

"The teachers are justifiably proud of the standards they have achieved and feel passionately that academy status would be a retrograde step for all concerned.

"They are dedicated and committed teachers who have been forced into this position because of this unnecessary structural change.

"The governing body should cease this obsessive pursuit of academy status which parents, staff and the local authority oppose."

Victor Aguera, NASUWT National Executive Member for the West Midlands, said:

"The school recently recorded some of its best ever GCSE results and previous Ofsted monitoring reports have been highly complimentary of standards of teaching and the attitudes of pupils.

"There is no consensus or appetite for this proposal from staff, parents or the wider community.

"We hope the governing body ensures that in reaching its final decision, it does so in a fair and transparent manner which enables the full complement of governors to participate."

Source: ©NASUWT

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