A NEW headteacher is bidding to recruit and retain the best teachers to help raise attainment at a struggling school.
Stewart Vaughan has taken over at Priory School in Southsea, which is now being sponsored by the Bohunt Academy Trust.
There is a genuine sense that this is a challenge that people are up for – and it’s doableStewart Vaughan, headteacher
Mr Vaughan, who started his teaching career at Brune Park in Gosport, comes from Bohunt School in Liphook, where the Bohunt Education Trust was created.
He came in as interim headteacher after James Humphries stepped down last month, and now he has been appointed permanently, at a school right on his doorstep.
‘I wasn’t certain it would be right for me because I hadn’t been working very closely with Priory. But it made sense and I have loved it and that’s been the key thing.
‘This is a school I know. This is my local school and my kids are going to this school,’ he said.
‘It was too good an opportunity to miss.
‘The priorities have got to be raising attainment.
‘It’s about high expectations and much higher attainment. It’s about saying to the students and the staff that yes, we can be successful.
‘There is a genuine sense that this is a challenge that people are up for – and it’s doable.’
This summer, 46 per cent of students achieved the gold standard of five or more GCSEs including English and maths. Mr Vaughan said that’s not good enough.
‘It wasn’t as high as the expectations. That’s why I’m here. The attainment hasn’t gone to the levels we expected it to go.
‘I knew it was going to be very hard work but I didn’t know how much good work was already going on and how much work we got done in the first three to four weeks in terms of moving things forward,’ he added.
‘Recruitment is absolutely key. It’s about recruiting and retaining the brilliant teachers we have already got.
‘There is something about this place and the work that needs to be done which is really captivating. It’s about sharing best practice and getting high quality people in.’