Two days ago (Thursday 21 May 2009), a Middle School Head contacted the Heads of 5 feeder Lower Schools and asked for the Lower Schools to distribute a letter to parents through pupils’ bookbags advertising an open information meeting at the Middle School about the two-tier / three-tier debate. The letter was not controversial or biased; everyone was welcome from both sides of the debate.
The 5 Lower School Heads refused.
Yesterday (Friday 22 May 2009) a group of concerned parents from that Middle School and from SMS stood outside the school gates of all 5 Lower Schools and handed out those letters on behalf of the Middle School. The Middle School Head had rung the Lower School Heads 30 minutes previously as a courtesy call.
Parents were overwhelmingly happy to receive the information. Why shouldn’t they be? It was only an offer to debate the issues!
All of those Lower Schools sent a representative, often the Head, but also parent/governors, to assert that permission was necessary from the Lower School to stand in a public place to hand out information, and to insist that we move on.
Those Lower School Heads should be ashamed of themselves.
Everyone should ask themselves – why did these Lower School Heads refuse to pass on information about open meetings? Even if they fervently believe that a change to two tier is desirable and they support the change entirely, it is one of the things underpinning a democratic society that everyone has a right to free speech and that censorship is bad.
Perhaps it is because the salaries of Headteachers are linked to the size of their schools, and all Lower School Heads are due to gain two extra year groups after the change, an increase of nearly 30% in their school roll?
See our links page above for information and ways to help fight this unnecessary, wasteful and educationally unsound change.