Chair of trustees at strike-hit school steps down

The chair of the board of trustees at a prestigious grammar school, which is involved in a dispute with staff, has stepped down with immediate effect.

In a letter to parents, Liverpool's Blue Coat School also announced it had selected its preferred candidate for the role of interim head teacher.

Kevin Sexton, the current head of Chesterfield High School in Crosby, will join on secondment.

Around 70 members of the National Education Union (NEU) are undertaking a series of strikes in a row over safety, workload and management.

Strike at Blue Coat School in Liverpool
Members of the NEU are striking over safety, workload and management [BBC]

The school confirmed a process to recruit a new chair from the board of trustees was currently underway.

It also said the search for a permanent head teacher was ongoing.

A spokesman for the NEU union said members were "disappointed" at the "ongoing uncertainty" the school faced but hoped the appointment of Mr Sexton would help to reopen negotiations.

The school, which was founded in 1708, is a selective grammar with academy status.

Negotiations have been ongoing for months and police were called to a previous meeting between the school and the union following a disturbance.

The NEU said after a ballot, which had a 91% turnout with 82% voting in favour of striking, about 70 members would take industrial action on 14, 16, 21 and 23 May and 12 and 13 June.

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