Academy set to appoint new headteacher

A NEW headteacher for a “rapidly improving academy” could be confirmed before Christmas.

Neil Hutchinson’s departure from E-ACT Royton and Crompton Academy for “personal reasons” was announced on November 19.

Neil Hutchinson

Andrea Atkinson and Nathan Bowker were confirmed as acting headteachers from the start of December.

The post was advertised as commanding a salary of between £83,528 to £101,574 and unterviews for Mr Hutchinson’s successor took place on Tuesday, December 11.

Allan Torr, E-ACT’s Regional Education Director (North), confirmed before the Correspondent went to press: “If there is a suitable candidate, I hope to appoint a new head teacher mid-December.”

Mr Hutchinson’s replacement would take charge at Easter 2019 or “sooner if available”.

The job description says the candidate should be: “an enthusiastic, inspiring leader who understands curriculum, teaching and learning and can lead school improvement.

“A leader with a clear vision and astute educational philosophy who is continually learning

“A leader who can create a learning culture within the academy

“A thinking leader who can improve provision and outcomes for groups of students, particularly the disadvantaged, white British heritage and the more able.”

The successful applicant will take charge of a new multi-million pound building and the “opportunity to define your own vision for the new academy when it opens in September 2019”.

Mr Hutchinson, whose career has been characterised by troubleshooting appointments, became interim executive headteacher in June 2016 after holding a similar position at Failsworth High School.

His remit was to turn round a school described as “inadequate” across all areas and placed into special measures following an Ofsted inspection in May 2017.

Included in the report was a statement: “New leadership has not had time to be effective in turning around the impact of several years of declining performance.”

Royton and Crompton became part of the E-ACT Academy trust in September 2018.

In his farewell letter to pupils, parents/carers, Mr Hutchinson said: “I am sure this is the right time to move on to make way for my successor.

“I believe there are now excellent structures in place for a ‘fresh pair of eyes and hands’ to build on, to create a great academy with possibly a new name and a brand new building.

“ERACA is a very hard place to leave. I have enjoyed working with caring pupils who are full of character, potential and great compassion.

“You, the parents, have always been supportive, interested and proactive helping us to improve in everything we do.

“I must put on record my deep appreciation for the loyal support I have received from my senior staff who share my deep commitment to the nurture and achievement of our pupils.

“They are a dedicated, diligent and caring team of professionals and one that every Headteacher would wish to work with.

“We have seen significant improvements in all areas. This has not been achieved without a massive effort from everyone at ERACA.

“I will always have a place in my heart for ERACA and I will remain a true friend to the school.”

In confirming the hunt of a successor was underway, Mr Torr paid his own tribute to Mr Hutchinson.

He said: “Since he was appointed Mr Hutchinson has led the whole staff team to make significant improvements to students’ behaviour to the quality of teaching and to students’ life chances.

“The academy has made great strides under his leadership and I am really sorry he is leaving.

“I and the regional team wish Mr Hutchinson well in the next stage of his very eventful career.”

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