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Fury as 85 school staff read they had been sacked in newspaper

Dozens of people rallied outside a Uniting Church office in Brisbane after more than half the staff at a Townsville Indigenous school criticised by a royal commission were given the sack.

The group of about 50, brought together by the Independent Education Union, stood outside the Milton office on Thursday morning calling for compensation for the 85 staff members let go at Shalom Christian College.

Earlier this month, the school announced it would be closing its secondary school and no longer taking boarders, following a review.

According to IEU Queensland president Andrew Elphinstone, the teachers and school staff found out their jobs would not be renewed next year from a story published in a Townsville newspaper last Monday.

“It is a shame they haven’t had a chance to solve the problems, they are just walking away from it,” he said.

It is understood approximately 125 staff were employed at the school, with 85 cut as of next year in line with the closure of Shalom’s secondary school and boarding facilities.

“The interesting thing for the school is that they are catering for this difference but now they are walking away because it is too hard to support the kids,” Mr Elphinstone.

The Townsville school was part of the child sex abuse royal commission regarding the alleged gang rape of a 14-year-old girl on campus in 2006.