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A recruitment agency will stop providing staff to a school in Essex following a row over the use of temporary workers to cover a strike.

Pertemps Education Network said it was told by Drapers’ Pyrgo Priory School it needed three teaching assistants for sickness cover. It was “completely unaware”, it said, of ongoing strike action at the Romford school.

Thirteen members of support staff at the school, members of the National Education Union, have walked out several times since the summer term over changes to their terms and conditions, which the school said would save it up to £60,000 a year.

The government changed the law in July to make it legal for employers to use agency workers to cover striking staff. A legal challenge to this decision was made by education unions this week.

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