*** DEBUG END ***

Teachers strike over proposed school closures

27 May 2016


Walk-out: Rodmell C of E primary school

Walk-out: Rodmell C of E primary school

TEACHERS at two Church of England schools in East Sussex walked out on Wednesday in protest at plans to close their schools.

The teachers, who are members of the National Union of Teachers, went on strike over plans to close Rodmell C of E Primary School, and Pells C of E Primary School. They protested outside County Hall, and were joined by parents who supported the action.

Pupil numbers at Rodmell have fallen to 48 — 15 under capacity — but are due to rise sharply by 2020, when the school is likely to be oversubscribed, the NUT said. It is rated “”Good” by OFSTED; Pells is rated as “Requiring improvement”.

East Sussex County Council said, however, that Rodmell did not have enough children in its normal catchment area, and children would be travelling in from areas such as Newhaven, Peacehaven, and Seaford to take spaces.

Although it had received a Good rating in its latest OFSTED report, the Council said that its attainment at Key Stage 2 has been below the national average for the past three years.

It also said that the school had not been able to balance its budget this year “and it is unlikely that they will be able to in the next three years. Even if the school is full, it is very small, and this creates budget challenges. The head teacher has recently resigned, with effect from end of August 2016. We think the school will struggle to attract a high-quality head teacher, given its circumstances and the local and national recruitment challenges.

“The diocese of Chichester shares the concerns outlined above, and has agreed that the Council should consult with key stakeholders about the proposed closure of the school.”

A consultation on the proposed closure ended today, and a decision is expected in the autumn.

Browse Church and Charity jobs on the Church Times jobsite

Forthcoming Events

Green Church Awards

Closing date: 30 June 2024

Read more details about the awards


Festival of Preaching

15-17 September 2024

The festival moves to Cambridge along with a sparkling selection of expert speakers

tickets available



Festival of Faith and Literature

28 February - 2 March 2025

The festival programme is soon to be announced sign up to our newsletter to stay informed about all festival news.

Festival website


ViSIt our Events page for upcoming and past events 

Welcome to the Church Times


To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read four articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)