Socialist Worker

Schools round up: Newham against academies

by Sadie Robinson
Issue No. 2585

NEU union members at Royal Docks Community School in Newham, east London, struck on Wednesday 13 December. They are fighting plans to turn the school into an academy.

Over 25 pickets and supporters turned out. Louise Regan, president of the NEU for the NUT section, congratulated the union group on closing the school.

NEU members leafletted the area, aware that parents knew little of what was happening.

The strike will bring it to their attention, but organising parents at secondary schools is a challenge.

The strike comes as another Newham school, Cumberland Secondary, has voted overwhelmingly for strikes against academisation. Some

69 percent backed strikes in a ballot on a turnout of 75 percent.

Workers plan to strike in the second week of the new term. And union members at Avenue School, also in Newham, struck on Thursday 14 December over the same issue.

Teachers, parents and others protested outside Hallsville School on Radland Road on Wednesday

20 December. The school became part of a Multi Academy Trust on 1 January.

Please send messages of support for the Newham strikers to assistant.secretary.nta@gmail.com

Brent against academies

NEU union members at the Village School in Brent, west London, struck on Thursday 14 December against academy plans.

Around 70 strikers joined picket lines.

Workers face a proposal to turn the school into an academy that would be part of a Multi Academy Trust.

One NEU member said there was a “determined mood” among strikers and that pickets won a lot of support from passing drivers. The NEU at the school had 32 members in September but, in further evidence that action builds unions, it now has 125.

Workers have joined in order to be part of the strike.

Please send messages of support for the strikers to hank.roberts@neu.org.uk

Progress in Westways workload dispute

Striking workers at Westways Primary School in Sheffield have unanimously voted to suspend further action following significant progress in their dispute.

The NEU union members are fighting over workload and other issues.

Management has now accepted the principle of a union’s right to negotiate on any collective matter of concern to its members.

Workers struck on Tuesday 12 December.

They held a successful two-day strike the previous week. Workers oppose changes in the school including a shorter playtime for early years children and Sats-style tests every half term in years three to five.

Sign the petition to support the workers at bit.ly/2i4lpI0

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