Parent questions 'jolly' by striking teachers
PUBLISHED: 08:00 11 July 2011
STRIKING teachers at one primary school in Weston have been accused of using the day off for a 'jolly' to Wimbledon.
The Mercury received the tip-off this week from a parent following the strike action by hundreds of teaching staff on June 30.
In a letter, the reader said teachers from Bournville Primary School opted against joining colleagues on the picket lines - and instead took the opportunity to travel to London and watch the tennis competition.
He said: “May I ask the teachers and staff to explain why they thought it was ok to go on a jolly to Wimbledon on the day of action?
“They left the school understaffed and put their own needs easily before the children.”
The school was one of a dozen in the area forced to close after 16 of its teaching staff took part in the strike. But headteacher Adam Matthews said he was unaware any of the absent teachers, who returned last Friday, had gone to Wimbledon.
He said: “The staff who gave notice they would not be school did not appear and I am not aware of what they did on the day - I have not asked them.”
The headteacher, who was in school with two other members of staff on the day, said he saw ‘no point’ in the strike action.
His opinion has been backed up by North Somerset Council’s executive member for education, Jeremy Blatchford, who said ‘teachers’ unions had lost touch of reality’.
Members of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) and the Association of Teachers and Lecturers joined in the strike action by public sector workers.
It was in protest against proposed Government pension cuts.