MORE than 70 per cent of staff have voted against a Kenton school becoming an academy, according to teaching unions.
The Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) and the National Union of Teachers (NUT) say they have asked headteacher of Claremont High School, Terry Molloy, if he plans on telling parents the results of the secret poll.
Last summer, Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Education, welcomed all schools to become academies and said those rated 'outstanding' by education watchdog Ofsted, which includes Claremont High School, would be fast-tracked through the process.
The Observer asked Mr Molloy if the school would apply for academy status despite staff voting against it, but he was unable to comment ahead of a governors meeting on Thursday night (Mar 10).
Hank Roberts, ATL and NUT secretary, said: "How can governors go ahead when they know more than 70 per cent of staff are against converting to an academy? Staff do not believe it would be in the best educational interests of the school.
"Claremont is an outstanding school. We say keep it that way.
"We have written to Mr Molloy expressing our concerns that parents have not been properly consulted."
There are also fears there could be redundancies if academy plans go ahead, but a spokeswoman for the school insisted staff had not been threatened with redundancies.
In a statement from the school's leadership team, it said: "The governors and leadership team are currently in the process of consulting with the stakeholders.
"Like all schools and local authorities, Claremont High School faces the very real issue of reductions in its income. When a school like Claremont is affected by such cuts there is a real danger that staffing levels will be affected especially when they are generous to begin with.
"The school leadership has simply made all staff aware of this potentially difficult situation as part of its consultation and information sharing."
The school said it will take into account all information gathered from the consultation process but that it will be the governors who make the final decision.
A meeting, organised by teaching unions for parents is scheduled at Kenton Methodist Church this evening from 7pm.