Governor database demanded after headteacher reports Trojan Horse has ‘not gone away’

A campaign for better governor training and a database of those removed or barred from boards will be launched by the NAHT after a headteacher reported death threats and “dead animals” hung on school gates in Birmingham.

Sarah Hewitt-Clarkson, headteacher of Birmingham’s Anderton Park School, told the NAHT national conference in Liverpool this morning that the behaviour seen during the Trojan Horse scandal had “not gone away” and that a lack of government action had “left gaps” for the issues to start again.

Ms Hewitt-Clarkson was speaking in support of a motion to conference which called on the union’s executive to lobby the government and National Governors’ Association introduce “better governor training” and “more timely interventions to ensure fit for purpose school governance”.

The motion, which criticised the lack of implementation of the Clarke report, will also spark a campaign for a national database of removed or barred governors “so that schools or local authorities can check the suitability of all new or existing school governors”.

Addressing the conference, Ms Hewitt-Clarkson said: “Trojan Horse has not gone away. Those of us involved knew it was the tip of the iceberg. We still have dead animals hung on the gates of schools, dismembered cats on playgrounds.

“We have petitions outside schools, objecting to teachers teaching against homophobia. We have death threats on Facebook, for example, towards me or ‘any headteacher who teaches my children it’s alright to be gay will be at the end of my shotgun’.”

She said all the “behaviours and things we saw before” were still there, and lamented the lack of action in response to the Clarke report adding: “To have promises that have been broken, not followed through, is absolutely unhelpful, unsupportive and have left open gaps for certain individuals to start again.”

The motion passed, with 99% of delegates voting in favour.

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