Three unions on strike at Halley Academy over plans to sack 80% of support staff
GMB Greenwich branch assistant secretary Donna Spicer said: “Nineteen support staff are being made redundant under the guise of ‘not enough funding’ yet Simon Beamish the CEO of Leigh Academy Trust is on a £230k salary.
“The support staff at Halley Academy are hard-working, caring, low paid workers in their role to support children with emotional and behavioural needs. Helping them access a good education while supporting them with their daily struggle. What does the CEO do? Sits in an office behind a desk shuffling papers. This is what academisation does. The GMB are here today to support the staff and say “We will not allow you to destroy the education of pupils in need and the lives of support staff who work incredibly hard.”
GMB regional organiser Clive Smith said: “GMB’s video from the picket line has been viewed 12,000 time on social media platforms, and been shared almost 200 times. This is not due to the members alone, this is because students, former students, parents of students and others in the local community can recognise the vital work that our members are doing on a daily basis.
“Incredibly Leigh Academy Trust have come to the conclusion that paying Chief Executive Simon Beamish £230k is necessary, yet 19 front line staff working and supporting the pupils directly are dispensable. This is the shabby economics of the Academy system.
“The direct funding of education should not be siphoned into high executive pay but should go into directly supporting our future generations. The GMB union and GMB members will not sit by and let this disgrace slip through quietly.
“There is still time to reverse this decision and we are calling on Leigh Trust to do just that and protect the future of special needs provision at Halley.”
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