Flintshire teachers face axe

Reporter:

Kate Forrester

TEACHERS in Flintshire could be facing the axe, with unions blaming a million-pound blunder by council chiefs.

Union officials say several of the county’s 12 high schools are in danger of being forced to make teaching staff redundant.

The news comes after it was revealed that Flintshire high schools were overpaid £1 million in a budget error. Increased budget pressures are adding to the problems, unions say.

The council has confirmed five high schools are to reduce staff, but said a number of factors were behind the moves.

Suzanne Nantcurvis, national executive member for North Wales at teaching union NASUWT, told the  Leader she had been notified of possible redundancies in 10 schools.

She added: “High schools across the county, and even some primary schools, have been affected by this.

“Every day we are receiving new announcements about possible job losses. It is absolutely outrageous.

“Flintshire has the highest potential redundancy rate among teaching staff in North Wales and the local authority is not handling the situation well at all.

“The schools are having to make cuts because they have to plan for the year ahead and they just can’t manage it with the budgets that have been set.

“Teachers should not have to pay for the council’s mistakes with their livelihoods - it will mean extra work for those who are left and fewer resources in the county’s schools."

Ms Nantcurvis said NASUWT would be seeking a meeting with council chiefs to ‘get to the bottom’ of the situation.

Ian Budd, the council’s director of lifelong learning, said: “Five high schools have started the process that leads to staffing reduction.

“There are 12 high schools in Flintshire.

“The reasons that they have given are reduction in intake, changed curriculum models and budgetary constraints (national post 16 funding reductions).”

See full story in the Leader

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