Redbridge schools closed as parents back strike

More than one in 10 schools in Redbridge are completely closed today due to strike action by the National Union of Teachers (NUT).

Around half of schools in the borough are partially closed with many secondary schools only having classes for their older students.

The strike is the result of a dispute over pensions between the NUT union and the government.

Parents have said that while they accept the teachers’ right to strike, if this became a regular occurrence they would no longer support them.

Narak Singh, 58, of Leamington Gardens, Ilford, has a 12-year-old daughter who is off school today due to the strike action.

Mr Singh said: “It’s getting more expensive to live and pensions won’t cover it especially as people live longer.

“In one day the children won’t loose their chances of getting a PHD. One day is not so much and parents can teach their children at home if they are worried.”

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This sentiment is echoed by Shabit Raza, 44, of Brook Road, Seven Kings who has a daughter at Valentines High School in Cranbrook Road, Ilford.

Mr Raza said: “Teachers have the full right to go on strike, everyone has that right. They should go even if it has a negative impact on the children.

“If they went for longer then it would effect the children’s education, but it won’t if it’s just for a few days.”

Eight primary schools are closed including Barley Lane Primary, Chadwell Health; Fullwood Primary, Barkingside; Glade Primary, Clayhall; Mayespark Primary, Goodmayes; Oakdale Infants, South Woodford; Redbridge Primary, Redbridge; Roding Primary Woodford Green and Winston Way Primary, Ilford.

A further 27 of the borough’s 53 primary schools will be partially closed with some classes cancelled.

The remainder, including the Aldborough E-Act Free School, Seven Kings, will be open as normal.

The majority of secondary schools will be partially closed with many calling off classes for the younger years.

Four secondary schools will be open as normal including King Solomon High, Barkingside; Trinity Catholic High and Woodford County High both in Woodford Green and the Ursuline Academy, Ilford.

Paddy Marshall, regional officer of the NUT, said: “Teachers don’t take strike action lightly, obviously they are concerned about their pupils.”

“Teachers are being told to work longer, pay more and get less from their pensions. The only thing we can do is to take action.”