Two teaching assistants face losing their jobs at an Ely school while 14 others have taken voluntary redundancy

Spring Meadow Infant School in High Barns, Ely. Annete Blewett is the new headteacher who joined in

Spring Meadow Infant School in High Barns, Ely. Annete Blewett is the new headteacher who joined in September 2017. - Credit: Archant

Staff at an Ely school are still unsure who will lose their jobs before the end of the summer term with the news that 14 staff have taken voluntary redundancies but two teaching assistants must still be dropped.

A three week consultation at Spring Meadow Infant school was labelled a rush job by union reps who said parents should have been consulted.

Job losses are among staff who look after the social and emotional needs of children, they say.

Fourteen of those have taken voluntary redundancy but a further two teaching assistants must now be made redundant.

Julia Drummond, of Unison Cambridge, said: “Staff are upset, these poor women have a couple of weeks until the end of term and now they’re unsure who it is who will go.

“All staff must effectively re-apply for their jobs and a process will be rolled out to decide who stays and who goes.

“There is a process called a quality impact assessment where the community gets to have their say. It is not a legal obligation but is good practice in these cases and this did not happen in this situation.

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“There is a lot of love and care at that school by dedicated staff who have been there many years.”

With just days to go before the end of summer term, teaching assistants, play and lunch supervisors and administrators were among those worried for their future.

A total of 65 jobs are being reduced to 51.

A spokesperson for Spring Meadow Infant and Nursery School said: “The governing body has needed to make some difficult financial decisions this year in light of a fall in the number of pupils joining over the past two years.

“Whilst we would not wish to need to make any staff redundant, we have to ensure that the budget allows the school to deliver a broad and balanced curriculum which meets the needs of all children.

“We have been able to maintain 19 teaching assistant posts and 15 midday supervisors. We are confident this will not impact on children’s welfare or health and safety. We continue to focus on supporting children to achieve the highest standards possible.”

Any changes will come into force from September 2018.