Teachers set to strike over work and bosses

Cherry Ridgway, headteacher at Collegiate High School
Cherry Ridgway, headteacher at Collegiate High School
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STAFF at a Blackpool high school are due to strike next week over complaints about “management style” and their “excessive” workload.

Union members at Collegiate High School will take one hour of industrial action on Tuesday afternoon following a ballot of school staff.

The National Union of Teachers (NUT) say the ballot showed more than 90 per cent of members are in favour of the action.

Rosalind Homer, National Union of Teachers secretary for Blackpool said: “I can confirm a one hour strike is planned at Collegiate on Tuesday afternoon.

“There have been a number of issues relating to workload and the management style of the head teacher and Union bosses will be meeting with her and the local authority on Wednesday.

“Our members are very keen to ensure any disruption to students is kept to a minimum.”

Cherry Ridgway (pictured) took over as headteacher at the school last September when it was in crisis.

An Ofsted inspection had put the school in special measures and GCSE results were not meeting Government targets.

One former teacher described behaviour at Collegiate as “anarchic” and Mrs Ridgway resolved to take a zero-tolerance approach on behaviour to transform the Blackpool Old Road school.

Today she spoke to confirm only a small number of the school’s 98 staff are to be involved in the action. She said: “Transforming the school has not always been easy and at times a small number of staff and pupils have found the changes challenging.

“However, when Ofsted returned to inspect the school in February, the improvements were apparent and inspectors said we were making good progress in pupils’ results, behaviour, attendance and achievement.

“I know at Collegiate, like any school, there is always further work to be done. I am totally committed to continuing to build on the improvements.”

Felicity Greeves, Chairman of Governors, confirmed they are pleased with progress.

She said: “It is testament to the hard work of the vast majority of staff and students the new approach is paying off.”