Staff at secondary school in Wembley on strike for the fifth time over academy plans

Staff at Copland Community School have staged their fifth strike over academy conversion plans

Staff at Copland Community School have staged their fifth strike over academy conversion plans - Credit: Archant

Staff from a secondary school in Wembley staged a walkout today for the fifth time against controversial plans to become an academy.

Workers at Copland Community School in Cecil Avenue, took part in a strike over the proposals which were announced after it was placed into special measures by Ofsted inspectors last year.

Under current government rules schools in special measures are converted into academies.

Under the plans the school will become an academy in September when it is placed in the hands of Ark who run an academy in nearby Forty Lane.

Delia Smith OBE, who is the principal of academy, will take on the role as executive head working with the school’s head teacher.

Hand Roberts, a geography teacher at the school is also the Brent branch secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers.

He said: The school’s Interim Education Board 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.

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“The massive strength of feeling is because staff know that this s really about privatisation and Michael Gove (Education Secretary) 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”.

Copland is the last secondary school in Brent which is still under the council’s control.

Grahame Price, chair of the school’s IEB , said: “We are sorry to see children’s education disrupted by strike action for the fifth time.

“The Interim Executive Board at Copland has met several times with staff, parents and the trade unions to discuss the proposal for Copland to become an academy. We will be in touch again with parents and staff when we have reviewed the results of the consultation.

“But ultimately, the needs of local children must come first – our priority is to improve the standards of education at Copland, which is what parents want to see.”