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From The Socialist newspaper, 2 October 2013

The fight against academies in Leicester

Simon Robinson, Leicester NUT, personal capacity

Rushey Mead School is a large secondary school in Leicester. It has been an 'outstanding' school for years and has strong links to the local community.

It is also a brand new school building, one of the last few to get this funding before the government pulled the plug.

Leicester is still a relatively academy free city. So it came as a shock to staff, students and parents when school management announced last year that the school would be 'exploring' the idea of converting into an academy.

Angry teachers met immediately and agreed to send a message of opposition to the governors. Over 80 letters were sent to the next governors' meeting, only to be ignored! The Rushey Mead anti-academy campaign was therefore launched with the aim of organising staff, parents and students.

The NUT spent the summer break campaigning, leafleting festivals and local housing. We are now in the middle of the 'consultation' period, ending early in October.

A successful meeting of parents and staff - past and present - heard the Leicester City council education leaders and the Mayor voice their opposition to the academy and fully support the campaign!

Various reasons for the plans are given - financial advantages, being able to 'support' failing schools and other 'freedoms' are quoted at us. The reality is that the school management see the future of the school as an academy 'business' - already a Teaching School, it will oversee a 'family' of primaries and even larger schools while selling services and support.

The 'Executive Head' of a local academy, Ash Field Academy, David Bateson OBE, is also on the management board of Rushey Mead Teaching School.

Ash Field became an academy 18 months ago and has just unveiled a new pay and conditions policy that dismantles everything that the NUT and other unions have won within Leicester City.

There is no doubt that this will be the future for staff at Rushey Mead should it become an academy!

We demand that the school stays within the local authority. Gove sees Leicester as a thorn in the side of his academy strategy - we refuse to let him get a foot in the door of the city!

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In The Socialist 2 October 2013:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Nationalise them now!

Tax dodging corporations profit from casualisation

Big business puts profits before environment

Tory millionaire tells Britain: 'Back to the workhouse!'

Them & Us


Socialist Party NHS campaign

Fighting to defend our NHS


Socialist Party reviews

TV review: Locked up for being ill?

TV review: Peaky Blinders

Theatre review: A man of humble beginnings


Socialist Party editorial

Capitalist parties offer nothing to the 99%


Socialism 2013

Socialism 2013 - a weekend of discussion and debate hosted by the Socialist Party


Socialist Party workplace news

Solid support for teachers' strike

Firefighters' four-hour strike - determined and clear that coordinated action needed

Rochdale care workers dig in

Liverpool pay victory

Leeds zero-hour protest

In brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

28 percent for TUSC in Fleetwood

Lincoln: 400 march against Library cuts

The fight against academies in Leicester

Building Socialist Students


International socialist news and analysis

Greek government forced to take action against neo-fascists

Activists demand full public inquiry into undercover police operations

Sudan: 'Down with the regime!'

Qatar: End this modern-day slave labour


 

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