The results of the secret ballot show overwhelming backing for taking a program of 'discontinuous' strike action in each of the five schools:
Bonus Pastor Catholic College: YES 14 NO 0
Prendergast Hilly Fields College: YES 23 NO 1
Prendergast Ladywell Fields College: YES 24 NO 0
Prendergast Vale College: YES 21 NO 0
Sedgehill School: YES 40 NO 1
Overall result across all five schools:
YES 98.4%, NO 1.6%
on a turnout of 73%.
As was explained in the covering letter sent to NUT members, "if the outcome of the ballot is successful and the dispute remains unresolved (i.e. we are not given a guarantee that the school will not be converting to an Academy), a formal ballot of members may then be necessary early in the New Year".
None of the schools have responded to the NUT with the assurances that we were seeking that there will not be a change of employer:
- At Sedgehill, Lewisham Council have gone ahead in the teeth of overwhelming public opposition to submit an application for an IEB - a step towards forced academisation of the school which has already seen the existing Headteacher announce his departure.
- The Governing Board of the Leathersellers' Federation ( for the three Prendergast Schools) have set up a Working Party to report on a possible Academy conversion. This is due to report back in the New Year.
- Bonus Pastor's Principal has written back to the NUT confirming that she has "submitted our interest to convert to an academy within the Catholic Diocese of Southwark"
The NUT is liaising with other teaching and support staff unions with the aim of being prepared to take strike action which is not only co-ordinated if necessary across all five schools but also across school staff unions too.