Long-running Hackney school dispute settled

School picket outside Leaways School in Hackney.

NEU school staff and their supporters stage a school picket outside Leaways Special School operated by private, for-profit Kedleston Group, on March 30.  - Credit: Amanda Bentham

School union staff have settled a dispute with an Upper Clapton special needs school, following strike action in March. 

The long-running dispute saw staff allege "appalling" conditions and poor education provision for students, among other issues, at privately run, for-profit Leaways School in Theydon Road, since December last year. 

The National Education Union (NEU) settled the disagreement with Leaways School's parent company, Kedleston Group, issuing a joint statement published on May 17.

A joint statement said: "Kedleston Group and the National Education Union are pleased to announce that the industrial dispute at Leaways School has been resolved."

The school voluntarily agreed to recognise the NEU and Iain Forsyth, former Leaways NEU representative, was reinstated after he was dismissed during the dispute. 

Kevin Courtney, the joint general secretary of the NEU, added: "Really pleased to say our members have unanimously agreed to withdraw all future action and end the dispute - following a very positive set of talks with management after many days of strike action and political campaigning."

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