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Goodwin Academy cuts 25 jobs as it moves to one site in Mill Road, Deal

By Mercury reporter

One full-time and two-part time teachers are among the five redundancies being made at Deal’s Goodwin Academy as the school prepares to move from two sites onto one.

In September, staff and students currently at Mill Road and Salisbury Road will move into a new £25million school in Hamilton Road.

There will be a total of 25 job losses over the current acadmic year.

Simon Smith Principal at Goodwin Academy in Deal
Simon Smith Principal at Goodwin Academy in Deal

The project has been in planning since funding was announced under the previous Labour government in 2009. It was endorsed by the coalition government in 2010.

In preparation for the move, principal Simon Smith has organised a restructure to cut staff numbers.

He told the Mercury that staff were always fully aware this would happen. The process began in January and finished in May with people invited to apply for new positions such as head of faculty, which is replacing the head of department role.

The role of progress leader is also being replaced by the more traditional head of year title. Mr Smith said: “The new build is on track for the doors to open in September but the impact of the restructure cannot be underestimated.

“Although there are only five redundancies, there will be a loss of 25 staff from September 2016 to September 2017.

“In addition to redundancy, reasons include end of short term contracts and resignations.” He added: “We planned rigidly for this to make sure we didn’t have a huge excess of staff. We had people on fixed term contracts knowing we’d be in this situation and haven’t replaced staff when they’ve left throughout the year.”

A total of 13 teachers and 12 support staff such as caretakers and admin staff have been cut. One full-time teacher and two part-time teachers are among those being made redundant.

Assistant principal Helen Rose, a member of the senior leadership team, is also leaving the school to take up a promotion working for the school’s sponsor School’s Company.

Mr Smith said: “We will be fully staffed from September for the first time in five years and I’m confident that this will improve standards.

“My ultimate goal is to make class sizes as small as possible.” The average class size from September will be 22 pupils.

When asked about the funding crisis in schools, Mr Smith said: “This whole restructure has accounted for the funding crisis in schools but it hasn’t affected us as much as it has other schools.”

To see pictures of the new school, three months from opening see this week's Mercury - pages 14-15

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