Teachers at Oasis academy to continue strike

Teachers at Oasis academy to continue strike

By staff writers
5 Dec 2011

Teachers at an Oasis academy have said they will continue to strike for four more days in the next two weeks, following last week’s national strike.

The strike action is in response to 13 planned redundancies – 10 of them teachers at the school - which unions say are being pushed through without proper consultation.

News of the planned redundancies to a fifth of the teaching staff led to a pupil riot at the school a few weeks ago, following which ten pupils were excluded.

The Christian group Oasis is one of the largest multi-Academy sponsors in England, with 14 Academies currently open and more in development.

Anti-academy campaigners say that the number of senior managers in Oasis has soared over the last year, with 42 staff in the Oasis chain on more than £60,000 per year, between them taking home at least £3,120,000.

Unions NUT and NASUWT voted last month to take the strike action.

Debs Gwyn a former NUT representative at Media City said: “Relations with Oasis were strained from the start of the Academy project. The staff were told by the then Director of Children’s Services, Jill Baker, that unless we accepted academy status the school would close.

“When Oasis issued their proposed academy structure in 2008 they were planning to make 18 teachers (nearly 25 per cent of the teaching staff) redundant. The unions negotiated four voluntary enhanced packages and no further job losses.

“When the academy opened in September 2008 there were hardly any policies available to or agreed by the unions. We were promised a new build by 2010 but the school is not moving into its new premises until September 2012 at the earliest.

“It became clear to me that Oasis had a business model of how they wanted their Academies to operate and they did not consider local factors or characteristics of the predecessor school.”

The school said in a statement to parents: "We will continue to meet the teaching unions to try to fully resolve the issues."

[Ekk/2]

Keywords: academies | oasis
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