An investigation has been launched after staff allegedly walked out of their jobs at an East Ham school amid a culture clash over LGBT+ issues. 

The Newham Recorder understands that at least three people have walked out of Plashet School since the beginning of the new school year in September. 

Two left days before the school underwent its first Ofsted inspection in more than a decade, the results of which are yet to be published.  

Some staff have called in the National Education Union (NEU). 

“NEU Newham has been contacted and is supporting members at Plashet,” it said. 

“We welcome the investigation currently being carried out, but will not comment further at this time.” 


Plashet and Newham Council refused to answer the Recorder’s questions – but neither denied whistleblower’s claims that the dispute was triggered by disagreements over the school’s treatment of LGBT+ students. 

The Recorder understands that an “equalities club” was shut down following complaints from religious parents that it promoted LGBT+ lifestyles. 

The Recorder sought access to internal emails about the dispute under Freedom of Information laws, but Plashet refused to comply, claiming the emails were all “personal”. 

A formal complaint has been lodged with the Information Commissioner’s Office. 

“They’re not personal information, they’re about a school in our borough,” said Danny Keeling, leader of Newham Council’s Green Party opposition and a member of the council’s LGBT+ steering committee. 

Cllr Keeling pledged to raise questions about the reported Plashet walk-outs with relevant cabinet members, adding: “I believe an independent investigation should be happening. Nobody should be marking their own homework.” 

The row reportedly continued last month, with a clash between religious and secular staff over a new equality and diversity policy.  

“Newham Council is aware of these allegations, which are subject to an investigation commissioned by the school in accordance with relevant policies,” said Vik Vermer, director of education and inclusion. 

“We are working with the school to support their response to this matter. It would not be appropriate to comment further whilst this matter remains subject to investigation.” 

Plashet School said it would not comment on “internal staff matters” but confirmed an investigation was underway and said it was “working with Newham Council”. 

Irene Papadopoulos – chair of the board of governors, tasked with scrutinising the school’s operations – was approached for comment.