Secondary schools in Tamworth are to be hit by further strike action by teachers on their return from summer holidays.
Teachers belonging to both the National Union of Teachers and the Association of Teachers and Lecturers are to co-ordinate joint strike action on Wednesday, September 16. Their action, which follows strikes of recent months, is in response to Staffordshire County Council’s decision to continue with plans to reorganise schools in Tamworth.
The proposals will result in the closure of all school sixth forms in Tamworth in favour of a new post-16 centre, and the opening of a privately-backed academy.
Christine Blower, general secretary of the NUT, said: “Our members’ determination to continue their fight against the council’s proposals is to be applauded.
“This is a dispute about education provision for the community of Tamworth and ensuring that every community has a good local school. The case against the plans is overwhelming. Students, parents and teachers are vehemently opposed to Tamworth’s family of schools being broken up in this way.”
Mary Bousted, general secretary of ATL, said the plan would mean massive changes to staffing and pupil numbers in the five Tamworth high schools. “The real devil will, of course, be in the detail of the terms and conditions of our members once staff are transferred over to this new employer, whose record at the Derby Academy gives great cause for concern. We will continue to oppose this proposal which we believe is not in the best interests of local children.”
Talks this month between the unions and county council failed to resolve the dispute, which has involved several day-long strikes by teachers, including NASUWT members. The new Conservative-controlled county council, which recently changed hands from Labour, has pledged to review the proposed schools reorganisation.