Vicky Beer, Operational Head at Ashton on Mersey School, Cheshire
Vicky has been operational head of Ashton on Mersey school since 2008, allowing executive head and National Leader of Education Tarun Kapur to focus on bringing nearby Parrs Wood High School – Manchester’s largest secondary school – out of special measures.
In 2008 Vicky led Ashton school to achieve an outstanding Ofsted rating and she is now a Local Leader of Education who has supported other schools in her own right. Ashton's results continue to improve under her leadership and exclusions have decreased.
Ofsted recognised her contribution by describing her leadership as outstanding while visitors to the school comment on the outstanding environment created by Vicky and her team.
Hillary Dilley, Lincroft School, Bedfordshire
Lincroft School’s last three Ofsteds have all been outstanding – and Hilary Dilley has played a major role in all of them.
In the most recent inspection, Hilary raised the bar and ensured that the school received 27 out of 27 grade 1 comments – at the same time as the executive head, National Leader of Education Mike Lavelle, succeeded at getting another school out of special measures. “Both would have been impossible without Hilary’s leadership,” says Mike.
“I’ve been able to assume an executive leadership role across a four-school federation, with an executive headship of two schools,” Mike adds. “We have retained excellent staff across the schools because of the compelling confidence staff and the community have in the leadership across the federation. Hilary is the hinge that allows this to happen.”
Gina Cooke, Corsham Primary School, Wiltshire
Gina Cooke stepped up to the headteacher role while executive head and National Leader of Education (NLE) Fiona Allen worked at a neighbouring school during its amalgamation with Corsham.
“We could never have completed what has been a remarkably successful journey without Gina’s influence,” says Fiona.
“Gina’s dedication, coupled with considerable insight maintained parental confidence and retained high levels of performance.
“Gina was totally committed to this challenge. Her sense of purpose and vision never faltered; a real compliment to her resilience as a leader.
“She remains an outstanding school leader who enables me to fulfil my role as an NLE providing further school-to-school support. She is worthy of this national recognition.”
Joint award to Robin Bosher of Fairlawn Primary School, Lewisham and Sue John of Lampton School, Hounslow
Robin Bosher, headteacher of the outstanding Fairlawn Primary School in Lewisham, has made an absolutely phenomenal contribution to the leadership of London’s primary schools through his role as a National Leader of Education (NLE) and Director for the London Primary Leadership Strategy.
During his leadership primary schools supported by Local Leaders of Education have seen their Key Stage 2 results improve at rates well above the national average. Robin has also become an executive head of a federation and has personally taken on the leadership of a second school.
Paul Bennett, Operational Director for Strategic Initiatives – Primary, at the National College, describes Robin as an “outstanding headteacher and system leader in national and regional policy and practice, in the field of primary education and school leadership".
As headteacher of the outstanding Lampton School, a National Leader of Education and Director of the London Secondary Leadership Strategy, Sue John has a selfless approach to her work which has made a massive difference to the lives of pupils across the capital.
During Sue’s involvement with, and then leadership of the strategy, London’s schools have moved from being one of the weakest regions in the country to becoming the highest performing in the country. She has worked personally in a number of schools and helped support others to turn them around, and the work she has pioneered in London forms the backbone of the National College’s renowned National Leaders of Education (NLE) programme.
Andy Buck, Operational Director of City Challenge for the National College, says: “She is rigorous about driving things through and to the highest of standards. Average or good are never enough for Sue.”
Individual award to Michael Wilkins, Chief Executive of the Outwood Grange Family of Schools, Wakefield
Michael Wilkins has been at the centre of the development of the National College’s National Leaders of Education (NLE) and National Support School programmes.
Michael was one of the first heads to be appointed an NLE and has worked supporting schools with the College since 2006. And during this time he has been the driving force in developing the Outwood Grange Family of Schools, a federation of six schools in the north of England.
Michael is passionate about giving every child the opportunity to be the best they can and focuses his support work on schools in special measures, using the massive leadership capacity he has built within his own schools to help turn these schools around.
Paula Holt, Strategic Children’s Centre Manager (Quality and Performance) for the London Borough of Tower Hamlets
A research project carried out by Paula Holt as part of a National College programme identified improvements in the way educational need was assessed and services delivered through the local authority’s 23 children’s centres. Paula started in her current strategic leadership position in February after working as a children's centre leader for three and a half years and has enjoyed being able to contribute to making significant changes in the way children's centre services are delivered across Tower Hamlets.
It’s an example of the sort of outstanding leadership typical of Paula. “She has developed many other leaders through her ability to encourage, coach and support staff and other children’s centre leaders in her local authority,” says Sue Egersdorff, Operational Director for Extended and Integrated Leadership at the National College.
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