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Proposed academisation of Village School up for debate at Brent Civic Centre

PUBLISHED: 12:57 02 February 2018 | UPDATED: 12:57 02 February 2018

Members of the Brent NEU making a stand in the House of Parliament. Photo by Brent NEU

Members of the Brent NEU making a stand in the House of Parliament. Photo by Brent NEU

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The proposed academisation of The Village School is up for debate in the wake of three consecutive days of strikes.

Members of the Brent NEU on strike outside the Village School. Photo by Brent NEUMembers of the Brent NEU on strike outside the Village School. Photo by Brent NEU

Placard-bearing members of the Brent National Education Union (NEU) were out in force this week as the school, which caters for around 270 kids with complex needs, took the decision to close on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in the face of the industrial action.

Members of the (NEU) were protesting against the Grove Park school exploring the idea of joining with Woodfield School and forming a multi academy trust.

The school has always insisted that a “final decision” will not be made until after further consultation with staff and parents at both schools – both of which have been under the stewardship of executive headteacher Kay Charles since September.

Following the protests, which saw teachers rallying at the Houses of Parliament and at the Civic Centre in Wembley, Brent North MP Barry Gardiner has arranged a 6pm meeting at the civic centre on Thursday.

Mr Gardiner met with a large delegation of NEU members in parliament last week and has written to Mrs Charles and Cllr Sandra Kabir, chair of governors and Brent Labour whip, giving them a list of questions to answer.

He said he is “concerned over the proposal” and warned that “if the academy were to struggle financially or academically there would be no back up from the local authority”.

As well as its “outstanding” Ofsted inspection rating, the NEU has described the school as a ‘flagship school’ for the council, due to its ‘state-of’the-art art building and ‘innovative approach to CPD (Continuing Professional Development).

Brent Labour Cllr Jumbo Chan added: “Like them and many other members of the local Labour party and trade unions, I strongly oppose the wholly unnecessary, unhelpful and misguided proposed plans to academise such a valuable local asset, and urge others to do the same”.

NEU members have also voted to strike again at the school on the mornings of February 20, 21 and 22.

To take part in the consultation, which closes the day after the public meeting, visit tvs.brent.sch.uk.

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