GMB Experts in the World of Work
Join GMB today
 Follow @GMB_union

GMB Dispute At Greenwich School Resolved

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

GMB Members Successful In Overturning Proposed Cuts To Support Staff Jobs At The John Roan School In Greenwich

It is a huge achievement for GMB members to be in this position where all jobs have been secured says GMB.

GMB, the union for school support staff, employed at The John Roan School, Maze Hill, Greenwich has ended their dispute with their employer following an agreement to keep all support staff in employment. (See notes to editors for copies of previous GMB press releases on the dispute)

The school was notified by GMB that an industrial action ballot took place between 4th May and 16th May. The outcome of the ballot was a 92% vote in favour of industrial action.

GMB has now been informed that none of its members will be made redundant as a result of the consultation on the budget deficit and that a working party would be set up between the unions and the school's management to discuss a way forward. In addition GMB were informed that the head teacher has also left the school due to 'ill health'.

Nick Day, GMB Membership Development Officer said "Following informing the school of our intention to ballot we are pleased to now be in a position to end the dispute at The John Roan School. GMB members were very clear that they did not accept the figures that were presented by the school regarding its financial position and were determined to fight for their jobs and the future of the school.

It is a huge achievement for GMB members to be in this position where all jobs have been secured and for appropriate discussions to proceed on the school's way forward. This should highlight to all schools support staff that they can challenge decisions they believe to be wrong and that the GMB will always be in their corner."

Steve Oakes, GMB Greenwich Branch President added "GMB members have now agreed to end their dispute with the school's management. I'd like to thank them for their unequivocal support and for showing that by standing together they can achieve such positive outcomes for both staff and the pupils."


Contact: Nick Day on 07717 510047 or Andy Prendergast 07984 492726 or GMB press office on 07739 182691 or 07970 863411

Notes to editors

1. John Roan headteacher Nadine Powrie resigns with immediate effect

2. GMB Ballot School Support Staff

Answers needed over unexplained £438,000 deficit and refusal to consult in a full and meaningful manner says GMB.

GMB, the union for school support staff, will be balloting its members at the John Roan School, Maze Hill, Greenwich for strike action over threats to jobs and massive cuts to the schools budget. The ballot opens on 4th May and will close on 16th May.

In March 2016 GMB and other recognised unions were informed that teaching and support staff would be consulted on redundancies due to a £438,000 deficit that the school had found itself in within the last financial year. The head teacher did not engage in a meaningful way and would not provide full financial information until the very end of consultation and refused to accept reasonable suggestions to cut the deficit. In addition to this GMB doesn't accept that the reasons the school has presented for the accumulation of a deficit stand up under scrutiny.

GMB will be joining the NUT who have already taken 2 days of strike action over the position the school has taken.

Nick Day, GMB Membership Development Officer, said "Our members at the John Roan School have tried unsuccessfully to get the head teacher to engage in a full and meaningful way, they have therefore regretfully taken the decision to consider industrial action.

It cannot be right for the school to present such a large hole in its finances over such a small period in time without presenting the unions and the staff with the relevant information in a timely way and for not accepting reasonable suggestions to get the school back on track.

We are therefore demanding that the school gets back around the table and listen, engage and work with the staff who want proper answers and appropriate solutions."

Steve Oakes, Branch President for GMB Greenwich said "GMB members were shocked to hear that the schools finances had gone from being in a sound position to being in a huge black hole. All we have asked for during this process is for the full facts, to try to mitigate redundancies and to find out where the extra spending has gone.

Our members are taking this action to secure the future of the education of its students. Educational outcomes will only be worsened by mass redundancies and less staff."


Notes to editors

1. John Roan teachers in Greenwich strike over proposed job losses

2. NUT letter to parents explaining the schools positions


Share this page