Chatsmore Catholic High School: Students Stage 'Walk-Out' After Teacher Redundancies

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Students set up protest on the playing fields
Students set up protest on the playing fields

Students at a high school in Sussex walked out of lessons in protest after two of their teachers took voluntary redundancy following budget cuts.

Hundreds of students at Chatsmore Catholic High School in Worthing gathered on the school's tennis courts and playing fields in an organised demonstration in support of "popular" teachers Jan Archer and Cora Gillies, local newspaper The Argus reports.

Headteacher Mike Madden told The Argus that the teaching posts could no longer be sustained by the school due to "lost funding" and "reduced budgets".

After hearing the news, students set up the group "Protest Monday on the field to save Miss Gillies and Miss Archer".

Pictures of students standing and sitting on the school's rugby pitches were tweeted, with student's rallying on social networks to support the "best teachers".


Gemma Lago
PROTEST in session at CHATSMORE catholic high school in Goring by sea to SAVE the job of the best teacher Miss Gillies, RT!

Scepticism at the pupil's motives were expressed underneath the article in The Argus, with one reader suggesting that the pupils had merely turned out as an "easy excuse" to get out of lessons on a sunny day.

However past and present student's have been outraged at the accusation, pointing to messages of genuine support left on the Facebook page.

Scarlett Sparshott, the pupil who set up the Facebook group, told the Huffington Post UK:

"We are not doing this to skip lessons and enjoy the sunshine.

"We love the teachers, they have done so much for us. When we first went out there it was really cold and then about an hour later it was sunny."

Another student at the high school, Tom Bradbury, has set up a petition on Change.org to rally his fellow pupils to support the reinstating of Miss Gillies. He wrote:


"Ms Gillies is one of the best staff members remaining at the school that has the compassion, care and willingness to constantly put students’ needs before hers".

The headteacher was unavailable to comment as he was conducting job interviews. It is unclear whether the interviews were related to the redundancies.

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