Strike warning to students

By Emily Pearce

Tuesday, April 8, 2014


Strike warning to students

Cowes Enterprise College students on strike. Picture by Robin Crossley.

A REPEAT of the student strike at Cowes Enterprise College could result in students being excluded from school.

In a letter to parents posted on the school website yesterday (Monday), Rebecca Pearce said students had been allowed to hold a peaceful demonstration on the school field last Friday, protesting against proposed teacher job and pay cuts.

But she has warned that any repeat of Friday’s actions would be dealt with extremely seriously.

As previously reported, 26 support staff and five teachers are facing redundancy as school bosses look to cut a projected budget deficit of almost £900,000, blamed partly on falling student numbers.

On Friday, after registration, hundreds of students poured out of class, waving banners and shouting 'save our teachers.'

In yesterday’s letter to parents, Ms Pearce said: "After the initial period of protest, the strength of student opinion became more apparent. It also became evident that a small minority of students were more concerned with causing issues, rather than 'protesting peacefully.'

"A very small bonfire was lit and extinguished immediately by a member of staff. This incident will be dealt with appropriately, as will that of furniture moving.

"Our aim throughout the day was to ensure the safe supervision of students involved in the protest. As the day progressed, more and more students returned to their lessons.

"I want to apologise for the lack of communication with parents. In hindsight, I can see that this was too little, too late. Our immediate concern at the time was the safety and supervision of the students.

"I want to make clear the press were asked to leave the site immediately until someone from the college was able to make a statement. The situation was, in fact, exacerbated by the presence of the press and by some comments made by a small number of onlookers.

"In terms of the future, what is paramount now is that the college returns to its normal level of high expectations and focus on learning. Any repeat of Friday’s actions will now be dealt with extremely seriously and could result in exclusion from the college.

"I would appreciate if all parents and carers could support the college in reinforcing this letter, and in so doing, helping us to ensure that the college returns to the normal levels of conduct and discipline that are normally in place."

A consultation on the staff restructure would continue until May 2, and no decisions had yet been made. Staff, students and parents were welcome to make their views known and voice any concerns, she said.



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by alan naylor

10th April 2014, at 02:18:19

I realy dont know whats going on they all seem so clever today they have cell phones and i pads computers and they are so quick with there fingers when playing their games and texting they have so many friends on facebook and text each other all the time I forsee a wonderful future in store all of them

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by Alison Langdon

9th April 2014, at 08:35:58

I would like to see the local authority and Hampshire take back this school, federate it with a school with a good/outstanding Ofsted and allow it to settle under a new governing body and strong leadership. The kids and parents have clearly had enough and I fully support the kids for standing up for their education.

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by ed mew

8th April 2014, at 19:51:26

Ms Pearce, I assume your logic is "do as I say, not as I do". These students were supporting their teachers, so why the big stick? Perhaps you will be looked after, however the other teachers may not be so fortunate!!

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by Derek Tyler

8th April 2014, at 18:27:32

Remember Students this is your School It is not just the building.You have the right to have your say without you(The Students) there would be no School.

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by Mat Thomas

8th April 2014, at 18:00:08


SCHOOL, A REPEAT of this incident CANNOT go on. ANYONE taking part will be severely punished.Parents will be spoken to.

Each unfortunate incident will be dealt with appropriately, as will that of furniture moving.

We are doing this for your own good.

Some are mislead by others - the Newspapers are to blame. It was only a small number of people responsible. We will root out and deal with the ring leaders.

What is paramount now is that the school returns to normal.The School will proceed with its Victorian values and proud tradition.


Normal levels of conduct and discipline will be put into place.

Bend over boy and stop snivelling girl.

....Goodbye Mr Chips...Hand me the cane...Captain my Captain...

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by Mat Thomas

8th April 2014, at 17:36:40

If they think that children can be treated in this way in this day and age then they have another think coming.

Maybe the idea that every minute should be spent cooped up in a classroom, and the pressure cooker learning method, is best is not so good after all.

It might not be such a bad idea to go outside and skip it once in a while.

Maybe it raises the question of this whole thing about targets, exams and the learning tin can.It might not be right that every minute of every day has to be filled because deadlines and subject time is tight, this might be time to look again at the timetables and kids stuck in front of a black or white board for endless hours.

Out of sight out of mind is what springs to mind.

The Headteacher has probably isolated herself among teachers, students and parents after her latest comments now. I wouldn't fancy being in her shoes.

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by Ashley Harcourt

8th April 2014, at 16:18:36

Well wait until June and surely it won't be Ms Pearce who will be dealing with anything?
Rather than threaten her students perhaps she should think about the message the students were trying to make - which was to support their teachers. Perhaps the message was lost on someone who feels happy supporting those same teachers by her planned absence from them?

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by Mat Thomas

8th April 2014, at 16:00:48

Someone doesn't like kids, seen and not heard maybe?

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by James McAdder

8th April 2014, at 15:49:51

"The question is what did you and the students learn about last week's strike?"

If you don't get what you want, keep throwing your toys out of the pram until you do.

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8th April 2014, at 15:41:45

Who does this head think she IS.
ITS the governor's that have the final SAY if someone is permanently excelled, and this will mean She will have to report to the governor's and I bet some them will also be parents of the student's and teacher governors?

SHE is destroying their education with her heavy handed approach to THEIR democratic right to walk out of lessons in support of THEIR HARD WORKING STAFF who will loose their jobs due to HER financial incompetents'.

Also when have you ever heard of a investigator listing to staff, students or parents when they have already MADE UP THEIR MIND BEFORE HAND.

At the end of the day what's the head going to do IF STUDENTS JUST DIDNT GO TO SCHOOL ON MASS ?

But isn't it a GOOD advertisement of how the school is being run !!!!!!
Would you send your child THERE.......

Any views or opinions presented in the comments above are solely those of the author and do not represent those of the Isle of Wight County Press.

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