Teachers at one of the best performing schools in Balham and the Magdalen Estate area went on strike on the 16th February, in protest of moves by school governors in favour of having the institution break free from the local authorities, and be run as an independent academy.
Carmel Pollen, spokeswoman for Battersea and Wandsworth Trades Union Council, expressed amazement at how Chestnut Grove board of Governors, having known the staff were always apposed to the move to become independent, can simply disregard their views, and not recognise that the teachers have their own, and the pupils’, best interests at heart.
The Wandsworth Guardian reported that Wandsworth Council leader, Edward Lister, criticised the National Union of Teachers (NUT) for pressing ahead with the strike action, which he described as “totally unnecessary”. But Peter Lahr, joint secretary of Wandsworth NUT, said members were firmly opposed to allowing schools to be controlled by “unelected and unaccountable groups”.
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