Tuesday 14 January 2014

Fifth day of strike action against Academy proposal at Copland: Staff unfazed and unbowed

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copland 5.3

Copland Community School remain solid in their determination to stop the ARK academy chain taking over their school in Wembley. They took an unprecedented fifth day of strike action today (14th January). The IEB continue to refuse to take part in any negotiations let alone even reply to communications from the Unions.
Hank Roberts, Immediate Past national President of ATL said, “The IEB have yet to respond to an offer of further talks nor even yet able to respond to staff and parents demand to be given a proposed timetable for the proposed conversion! The massive strength of feeling is because staff know that this is really about privatisation and Gove intends to allow those running academies like ARK to make profit out of state education. Their intention is to impose a third world education system in England.
Our intention is to continue and increase the level of resistance to stop them”.
Tom Stone, Acting NASUWT Brent Secretary said, “Copland staff are showing amazing tenacity in continuing to be prepared to stand up for their school by taking yet another day of strike action. The  NASUWT fully supports members taking action at any school where management try try impose academisation”.
Jean Roberts, Joint Brent Teachers Association NUT Secretary said, “ By standing firm staff have won on a collective grievance over job titles and also, through the threat of further strike action, the threat of compulsory redundancies for teachers has been withdrawn. At the well attended joint unions meeting last week staff were up beat and fully behind the campaign to defeat ARK. Just today there were revelations in The Guardian after freedom of information requests showed taxpayer-funded academy chains have paid millions of pounds into the private businesses of directors, trustees and their relatives.”
Leaflets will be handed out outside Copland for pupils to take home to parents explaining why action is taking place. This leaflet from the school’s anti academy working party has been translated into the most common languages used by pupils. This has not been done for any letters sent out by the IEB.
There will also be discussion on what further action there will be to widen the campaign.

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