PROGRESS has been made at Ysgol Aberteifi following a bullying row Ceredigion county councillors were told.

Members of the learning communities overview and scrutiny committee received a report from corporate director Barry Rees on progress made following an independent investigation at the Cardigan secondary school.

There had been complaints from some current and former staff about the management practices of senior leaders at the school, including the headteacher.

A strike was held by teachers in December 2018 and January 22 with the potential for further action remaining while dispute resolution requirements are fully met.

In January, Peter Harrison investigated the allegations relating to a “culture of bullying” but the complaints were not upheld. This was not accepted by the union, NASUWT.

His report stated that “the school needed to review its management practices in the current context of a successful school” and made a number of recommendations.

Mr Rees said at committee on July 17 that Ysgol Aberteifi had been on a “journey of improvement” for the last decade and had successfully increased pupil outcomes.

“The school hasn’t been defensive to the union about what it wants them to complete and accept that the style of maintaining the standards has to be different,” add Mr Rees.

Cllr Mark Strong said that teachers were under increasing pressure and ensured improvements should not be done in a “counter-intuitive” way.

Lead officer for schools Meinir Ebbsworth said that it was “important to support our staff to be the best they can be and headteachers have to ensure the best for the children.”

Mr Rees added that the authority would not “step back” with its challenge to schools standards or the process to be followed if teachers are underperforming.

He said that the council recognised the union and the rights of staff to be members after Cllr Odwyn Davies said that teachers often go to the union first, instead of discussing matters with headteachers.

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