Socialist Worker

Stopping academisation can’t be left to one school

Issue No. 2605

The NEU union has called off a planned three-day strike at Acton High school in Ealing, west London.

The strike was due to begin on Tuesday of this week, following a number

of walkouts against a planned takeover of the school by the Ark academy chain.

NEU members are also in dispute over allegations of bullying and management’s response to behaviour issues.

They overwhelmingly voted to call off the action at a meeting last week.

They won some things and didn’t feel further strikes could win more.

Stefan Simms is divisional secretary of Ealing NEU (NUT section).

He told Socialist Worker, “The strike wasn’t in vain—we did win some things.

“The head and deputy head teacher have gone and the school is taking pupils’ behaviour more seriously now.

“We did win some other minor concessions from Ark But we set out to stop Ark taking over the school and we failed.”

Stefan said that many teachers are now looking for jobs elsewhere because they don’t want to work for Ark.

He added, “No matter how strong the union is in one school, it’s hard for any school to resist a forced academy conversion in the face of government and local authority support for a particular sponsor.”


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