The Fight is on to Save Rushey Mead Secondary School
The governors at Rushey Mead Secondary School are investigating the possibility of converting the school into an academy. A great deal of misinformation and propaganda has been thrown at staff by the executive headteacher, in an attempt to persuade them that it is necessary for the school to do this to support other schools in the city. The truth is rather less altruistic.
The school has just been completely rebuilt through the Building Schools for the Future programme, and it is interesting that the executive headteacher and governors ensured that this was complete before embarking on removing the school from the Local Authority.
Examples of attempts to mislead the staff include:
• Suggesting that the conditions of service of teachers cannot be changed for seven years. This is complete nonsense.
• Stating that the Local Authority are encouraging the school to convert. Take a look at the most recent full council meeting to see how untrue this is. http://www.leicester.public-i.tv/core/portal/webcast_interactive/105964 Go to 33.53 and watch to 38.29
• Applying for the £25,000 grant that the government offer for legal fees once a decision to convert has been made and claiming that it is simply to investigate the possibility of converting.
• Failing to pass on 71 letters from staff addressed to the governing body opposing the move.
• Misleading governors into voting to consult on conversion under the guise of innocently applying for a grant.
The executive headteacher has clearly decided that this move will be in her own interests and has demonstrated that she will use any tactic to ensure that it happens. Staff at Rushey Mead will come under a huge amount of pressure next term as the propaganda will increase. Messages of support from NUT groups in other schools across the city will really help to give confidence to what is likely to become a protracted battle to save the school. Please send messages to the NUT rep Adrian Hillyard: adrianleicesternut.org.uk.
National NUT Deputy General Secretary, Kevin Courtney, is speaking to a joint union meeting of all staff this week and will point out the real dangers of academy status for staff at Rushey Mead and for education in the city.