Staff at a London secondary school which has been at the centre of student protests amid accusations of race discrimination are in talks over strike action after passing a vote of no-confidence in the headteacher.
Pimlico academy is facing mass staff resignations with hundreds of students staging a protest on Wednesday morning after changes to its curriculum, the introduction of a strict uniform policy and the placement of a union flag outside the building.
After the protest, which the school had attempted to block, the school agreed to a list of pupils’ demands and the union flag has now been removed. In a separate email seen by the Guardian, the school sent parents three documents, including its uniform policy with the offending rules crossed out and an apologetic statement from the principal, Daniel Smith, addressing their concerns.
Smith said after talking with students representatives, the school would conduct a review of its flying of the union flag, map out changes to its PSHE provision and review safeguarding procedures around women’s safety and sexual assaults.
スミス, who was forced to close the school early, also called staff for a briefing. In a recording sent to the Guardian, スミス, who describes the events as “emotionally draining”, is heard apologising saying it was the culmination of so many “unhappy messes” that had been building for some time and that personally it would be a “poignant opportunity” for reflection.
“I wanted to get you together … to start by saying sorry because at the end of the day … today has been upsetting and distressing and really disappointing … and, 最終的に, the buck stops with me, そうじゃない?” As Smith finishes his speech, promising change after the Easter holidays, there are shouts of “leave” heard in the background.
A teacher at the school, who had handed in her resignation and is due to leave this year, said afterwards, several colleagues congregated to discuss their shock at the continued poor leadership but immense pride in the way students conducted themselves.
彼女は言いました: 「「[がある)] sadness that they had to resort to such actions. Pimlico, up to this point, has always been an inclusive school,” she said.”
“It needs to be recognised that it is not just Daniel Smith, but more importantly the trust that recruited him who have let things escalate to this point. The behaviour policy was written by the trust. The majority of staff stand in solidarity with the students and we are dreading the return to school as we do not feel things will be suitably addressed," 彼女は付け加えた.
It is understood that up to 30 members of staff still plan to leave at the end of the year, and hours before the student protest the National Education Union, which represents teachers at the school, held a vote of no-confidence in the academy’s new principal designate, スミス, and took an informal vote on whether to pursue strike action.
Eighty-five members of staff passed a motion of no-confidence in Smith at 99% そして 83 staff voted at almost 98% in favour of moving towards a ballot for industrial action.
The union said there had been overwhelming support for action as staff at the school felt there had been serious failures of management which are bringing the school into disrepute. 声明の中で, the union said that since Smith arrived at the school last summer the entire senior leadership team has resigned.
Martin Donohue, the NEU’s ロンドン regional officer, who is dealing with the dispute, described the school as being in a “chaotic” state. “Members will be moving toward a ballot for strike action because of unacceptable management style, failures to communicate properly with staff, including in response to serious incidents, failure to provide a safe working environment for staff, refusal to meaningfully engage with NEU representatives, and unreasonable workload," 彼は言った.
The Guardian exclusively revealed earlier this month that students, parents and some staff at the central London academy were angry over hairstyle and hijab rules, changes to its history curriculum and a union flag that had been erected outside the school.
Future Academies has been contacted for a statement.