PUPILS at a primary school staged a protest over its governing body’s “failure” to appointment a permanent headmaster.

A handful of students from Peacehaven Heights Primary School staged a demonstration in a park in Peacehaven.

They displayed a banner which read, “Where’s out head at?” – a question directed at the interim executive board (IEB) which runs the school.

Peacehaven Heights has been led by five different headmasters over the last five years.

The Argus: Peacehaven Heights Primary SchoolPeacehaven Heights Primary School

The schools’ normal governing bodies were sacked after they decided not to hand the school over to a private academy trust in 2019.

Vicky Hawkins, a parent of a child in Year 3, said the IEB, imposed by East Sussex County Council, has made “just one” attempted to recruit a headteacher in almost three years.

She said: “It is not acceptable to leave the school for this long without the stability of a permanent headteacher.

“We feel that the appointment of a new head is being purposely delayed to justify bringing in an academy trust to take over the school.

“The IEB have made one irreversible decision after another, such as making long standing staff redundant, filling in the school pool without consultation and now academy conversion seems to be the next thing on their agenda.”

Parents claim that the IEB is “intent” on pushing through academy conversion without meaningful consultation, which they argue cannot take place until parents are able to meet in person to discuss any proposals.

However, East Sussex County Council has said the IEB has confirmed it will not hold a consultation until all current lockdown requirements are removed.

A spokesman also confirmed that the current interim headmaster will remain in post until April 2020.

The National Education Union is currently balloting its members at the school to take strike action over possible academy plans.

A public meeting has been called on Zoom for parents and concerned members of the community for Tuesday, April 20.

Phil Clarke, National Education Union branch secretary in East Sussex, said: “Our members don’t take strike action lightly because they are well aware of the disruption it causes to education and parents.

“But they took strike action over exactly the same issue in 2019 and feel strongly enough to do it again.

“We support the parents entirely reasonable demands that consultation should not take place until they can meet in person and that a proper locally run governing body should be reinstated before any decision is made about the future of the school.”