TEACHERS at four independent schools within Coventry School Foundation took the first of 10 planned days of strike action on Wednesday over proposed merger plans they say will result in potential job losses.
Members of the NASUWT Teachers’ Union at Bablake School, Bablake Junior School, King Henry VIII School and King Henry VIII Prep School claim Coventry Schools Foundation has failed to consult with them over the planned restructure, despite the potentially serious implications for their jobs and livelihoods.
Dr Patrick Roach, general secretary of the NASUWT, said: “The employer’s plans have created significant anxiety for NASUWT members employed by the Coventry School Foundation, as well as strong opposition from parents.
“Despite the significance of the plans for teachers’ jobs and livelihoods, the employer has failed to undertake any adequate consultation with its staff or the NASUWT on what these proposed changes will mean for teachers. This is true of both the original plans for the merger and new plans which have been hastily developed.
“It is completely unacceptable that teachers should be left in the dark on such critical matters and be denied the opportunity to have their concerns heard by their employer.
“We regret any disruption this strike action has on pupils or parents but we hope they will understand that this action is about safeguarding the provision of high-quality education at the school, delivered by experienced and skilled teaching staff.”
Debbie Hayton, NASUWT national executive member for the West Midlands, said: “Teachers at Bablake School, Balake Junior School, King Henry VIII School and King Henry VIII Prep School deserve to be treated with respect by their employer and to be able to have a say in how their schools are operated in the future.
“The NASUWT has not been provided with information by the employer to justify its plans for merger or why this restructuring is necessary.
“We remain ready to work with the employer to find an alternative plan for the future of education provision within the Coventry School Foundation which protects teachers’ jobs and supports the continued provision of high quality education for every pupil.”