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‘Groundhog Day’ for Crouch End school as teachers prepare to strike

10:48 22 March 2012

Patrick Cozier, head teacher of Highgate Wood school.

Patrick Cozier, head teacher of Highgate Wood school.

Archant

Teachers at a Crouch End school are preparing to go on strike again – in a repeat of the same situation last year.

Teachers at Highgate Wood School voted in favour of strike action - the provisional date given as Wednesday, April 18 - after the governing body announced its plans to increase teaching hours by an hour each fortnight.

Members of the National Union of Teachers (NUT), who are still hoping talks will avoid any need to strike, took action for the same reason last May. Two further days of action were avoided after a compromise was agreed.

Haringey NUT secretary Julie Davies said: “We are exactly where we were last year. It must be Groundhog Day.”

Headteacher Patrick Cozier has defended the plans, which would help the school combat a £225,000 budget deficit caused by overspending two years ago but, the NUT claim, would leave teachers with less time to plan lessons.

Mr Cozier said: “We are very keen to avoid a strike at Highgate Wood School. It would be disruptive to our students.

“Like a number of other schools in Haringey, and indeed across the country, Highgate Wood School is facing a budget deficit and we’re part way through a long-term deficit reduction programme. We’ve made good progress over the last year and a half and we need to continue this.

“For the 2012/13 timetable the model that we are running will actually result in over 50 per of our teachers teaching less than they currently do.”

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