Teachers to stage a two day strike over head’s suspension

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STRIKES are taking place at a South Yorkshire primary school next week over the suspension of the school’s head teacher.

The National Union of Teachers describe the suspension of Craig Roberts at Listerdale Primary, in Rotherham, as “unreasonable treatment” and “an unjustified suspension” of one of its members.

But a statement from the Children’s Academy Trust, which runs the school, said it was necessary in order for an independent formal investigation to take place into “serious concerns of a non-safeguarding nature.”

The union says the first of a series of strikes will take place on Wednesday and Thursday. In a statement the union said that the head was suspended wihout warning in September and 12 weeks on “it remains unclear as to the reasons for the suspension and the employer has since provided no further information.”

A Children’s Academy Trust spokesman said: “The process being followed by the trust is prescribed and not a choice. The suspension will remain in force until the outcomes of the investigations are known.”

“The Trust can confirm that it has now received official notice of the action, which is set to take place on Wednesday and Thursday of next week.

“The Trust views this action as regrettable for the school, its children and their families, particularly since the Trust has had no option other than to respond to those serious concerns by putting in place a suspension pending proper and fair investigation. The Trust will be putting measures in place to keep the school open during this and any other proposed industrial action.”

The NUT says it had put forward proposals in an attempt to avoid strike action but said these have been rejected by employer.

The union also said that the academy trust had refused to attend talks with the Advisory Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS).