Chaos reigns at Peacehaven Heights Primary School as IEB Chair resigns and County Council announces they will seek to privatise the school

IEB Chair resigns and IEB announces its support for academisation within 24 hours of each other

Yesterday Jon Taylor, chair of the Peacehaven Heights Primary School Interim Executive Board (IEB), wrote to Peacehaven Height’s parents informing them of his intention to step down from his role.

Still contemplating the significance of his resignation, this morning parents received a further letter, informing them that the IEB had voted in favour of pursuing an ‘academy solution’ for the community school. 

On receiving the news Phil Clarke, Branch Secretary for East Sussex NEU said: “Having failed to pressure the previous community based governing body into handing the school over, the mask has well and truly slipped, as East Sussex County Council confirm what was always suspected – that the whole process of imposing an un-elected governing body was about privatising the school.

“The board, supposedly brought in to provide stable leadership, has provided nothing to the school beyond concreting over the pool then moving on the very successful interim head. Now we have the farce of having its own chair resigning at the very meeting it decided to push through privatisation.

“That the period of Covid lockdown has been cited as when the school has not shown rapid enough improvement and therefore needs to be handed to an academy chain, shows how cynical this whole situation is.  It is not too late to turn this back. Councillors now need to decide who they are elected to serve, the children and the community or Academy chain CEOs.”

The two announcements come only days after the National Education Union school group for Peacehaven Heights Primary, passed a motion announcing their opposition ‘to any move towards academy status’ and requesting that ‘The IEB provides reassurance that they will not pursue academy conversion’.

Hands Off Peacehaven Schools and East Sussex NEU are once again calling on all parents and the wider school community to join the campaign by writing to their elected county councillors asking for their support in opposing the chaotic transfer of our community schools to a remote multi-academy trust: https://actionnetwork.org/letters/hands-off-peacehaven-schools.