Statement By NUT Members At Khalsa Primary
We the staff at Khalsa Primary School would like to correct some false information printed in the press and also circulated through other forums regarding the staff of Khalsa VA Primary School, and in particular, about the teachers at the school.
It has been stated that the National Union of Teachers (NUT) members at the school are against the opening of a Sikh Secondary School. This is categorically untrue. We wholeheartedly support the opening of a Sikh Secondary School and see this as a positive development for the local community.
We were wrongly informed that the only way that the Gurdwara could open a new secondary school was by also making our primary school an academy. The Department of Education has stated that this is not the case. It is possible for a Sikh secondary school to be opened as a Free School, and that our primary school can remain under the control of the local educational authority.
Whilst we support the opening of a Sikh secondary school we do not wish for our school to be turned into an academy as we feel it would be detrimental to the children’s learning if they lost the services of the local educational authority. Due to this the staff at the school voted via a legal ballot to strike to prevent the primary school being academised. It was insinuated that any Sikh teachers who were not in favour of the academisation of our Primary school were bad Sikhs. Such statements have been deeply hurtful and have done nothing to improve relations between all stakeholders.
We continue to support the opening of a Sikh secondary school and defend the right of our primary school to remain under the local educational authority.
We will also continue to support and defend our headteacher, who was subjected to bullying. We were appalled and horrified by this bullying and asked for it to stop. Our headteacher has continued her role with great stoicism despite what she has been made to endure, which is to her great credit. We are pleased that the false allegations levelled at Ms Sehmi have now been dealt with. We can now concentrate on the most important thing of all, teaching the pupils at Khalsa Primary.
Statement by Ealing NUT
We congratulate NUT members at Khalsa for their united, principled and determine stance in defending their Headteacher and NUT member. We also praise the Headteacher Ms P K Sehmi for her resoluteness and bravery in the face of such a prolonged and vicious bullying. We thank the Local Authority for its correct intervention, which was very much appreciated by all concerned; this avoided the NUT seeking a successful resolution by other means.
We call upon all sides of the Gurdwara to stop using Khalsa Primary School as a prize in its internal elections. The school’s purpose is to teach and prepare the pupils for the future, it must not be used for the vain glories and ambitions by some, often in the public eye, in Southall.