Campaign call for public meeting

Kimberley School
Kimberley School

A CAMPAIGN group trying to stop The Kimberley School becoming an academy has called a public meeting because members do not think there has been sufficient consultation with parents.

Ian Stevenson, the chairman of Save Kimberley School from Academy Status, wants as many parents to turn up as possible after only a handful turned up to meetings organised by the school.

“What I am trying to get out of it is for people to speak for it and against it and for parents to access a much wider variety of information than that they have already been given,” he said.

“There’s been very little information provided to them.”

Mr Stevenson, also a National Teachers Union member, said the school governors organised four meetings, which were attended by six, 29, five and 14 parents respectively.

“This is a school with over 2,000 parents,” he said.

“What can parents turn up to these meetings and say as part of the consultation if they don’t know anything?

“Whilst there have been meetings, in my view they were just for the governors to tell parents all about the plans.”

Mr Stevenson is also annoyed that the school has not consulted with the six feeder primary schools in the area.

He said with the pupils moving up to The Kimberley School next year, it is more important teachers and governors consult with parents at these schools, than the parents of the older pupils at The Kimberley School.

“The primary schools should have more say than those in years 12 and 13 at Kimberley because they will be leaving,” he said.

The Advertiser was unable to contact headteacher at the school Chris Teal before going to press.

If the school became an academy it would mean instead of being run by Nottinghamshire County Council as it currently is, it would be run by a team of school governors who would have the freedom to change things such as the curriculum and dictate the intake of pupils.

Mr Stevenson, the Yorkshire Midland regional secretary for the National Union of Teachers, says the school should belong to the community and the plans would allow the school to opt out of national agreements on pay and conditions and give teachers the power to be ‘selective’.

But headteacher at the school Chris Teal said there was a ‘political will’ for schools to move to academy status, and he did not want to be left behind.

The meeting will be held at Kimberley Parish Hall in Newdigate St at 7pm next Tuesday, December 6.