Scores of people marching against plans to turn Moulsecoomb Primary into an academy have stopped traffic this morning.
⚠️ Due to the protest march on Lewes Road causing a disruption, all southbound #services (not bendy buses) that run along Lewes Road are currently operating via Upper Lewes Road to get to the Open Market. ⚠️
— B&H Buses (@BrightonHoveBus) July 13, 2019
Campaigners assembled at the primary school in Lewes Road ahead of the march to the Level, which began at about 10am.
They are protesting the government’s decision to force the primary school to become an academy following an Ofsted inspection which rated it as inadequate.
The move has been opposed by parents, staff and local councillors from every party, who have called for the school to be reinspected.
One of the marchers, NAHT rep and head of Downs Infant School Hildi Mitchell, said: “We don’t want Moulsecoomb to become one of the ever increasing numbers of ‘zombie’ academies who get passed around academy trusts because they are not wanted.
“Moulsecoomb is wanted here in our LA and in the Brighton and Hove family of schools. Brighton heads are committed to giving its head Mr Sutton any support he needs.”
Yesterday, shadow education secretary Angela Rayner sent a message of support after meeting with council leader Nancy Platts.
She said: “I want to join Nancy Platts, along with all of Brighton and Hove’s Labour councillors and MPs, trade unions, parents and teachers in demanding that this government gives local people a genuine say over the future of their schools and their children’s education.
“Labour will end the forced conversion of local schools to academies and instead focus on delivering what works to get the best results for pupils.
“For too long, parents and local communities have been shut out of decisions affecting schools in their area. The next Labour government will give power back to communities so that our schools are run by the people who know them best – parents, teachers and local communities.”