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Superhead’s mission to keep school’s good Ofsted rating
HEADTEACHER Martin Lester is aiming to sustain Rose Hill Primary School’s good Ofsted rating during his year at the top.
The so-called superhead has taken the reins at the school in The Oval for one year while governors find a permanent replacement for Sue Mortimer, who retired as headteacher at the end of last term.
Mr Lester, who lives in South Hinksey, moved from his interim headship at Berinsfield Primary School, near Wallingford, now known as Abbey Woods Academy, to take up the role.
The 63-year-old told the Oxford Mail: “I’m happy to be here. It just continues the work and the role I have been fulfilling over the past 10 years as an interim headteacher.
“I was approached to take on interim head for the year because the governors had – despite their best efforts – not managed to appoint a substantive headteacher.”
And he is already looking at the challenges ahead.
“I have inherited some development priorities from Sue Mortimer,” he said.
“At the moment I am assessing and evaluating what is working well and what might benefit from some revision. We have already slightly changed the arrangements for the beginning of the school day, with teachers being on duty for the playground, the children lining up and going in. That has helped them be more punctual.”
Ten years ago, Mr Lester, who has been teaching for 41 years, joined the Oxfordshire School Improvement Team as an advisory head, a role that supported schools that were in special measures.
He is now self-employed.
Rose Hill was put into special measures in 2007, but transformed under the headship of Mrs Mortimer. Its last Ofsted inspection in 2010 rated the school as good.
Mr Lester said: “We are aiming to at least sustain the school as a good school. If it was higher, that would be wonderful.”
MARTIN Lester has been a teacher since 1972.
He was a headteacher in three primary schools, before joining the school improvement team in Oxfordshire.
Mr Lester was one of three experienced headteachers and a team of teachers who were tasked to turn around struggling schools in the county.
The team was disbanded in 2010 and Mr Lester now works as an education consultant.
He has been drafted in to help several Oxfordshire schools including: Thameside Primary School, Abingdon, Windale Primary School in Blackbird Leys, Botley Primary School, John Henry Newman Primary School, Littlemore, and St Christopher’s Primary School, Cowley.
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