ALAN MAK: Great leadership makes great schools

The Havant MP believes to have a good school you need a brilliant headteacher

Wednesday, 13th June 2018, 11:54 am
Updated Tuesday, 19th June 2018, 4:43 pm
Alan Mak MP with headteacher Caroline Mason and pupils from Bidbury Junior School in Havant

People often ask me what makes a great school. As a former school governor and president of Magic Breakfast, a national charity working inside schools, before becoming an MP, I’ve seen a wide range of schools all over the country.

Since becoming an MP three years ago, I’ve made it my priority to visit all the schools in our constituency – I’ve been to every secondary and college as well as nearly every primary school.

Through that work I’ve spoken to a wide range of teachers, pupils and parents. I’ve had meetings with governors and headteachers, and seen first-hand the difference a first-class education can have on the prospects of a young person.

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Undoubtedly, the feature that makes a great school stand out from the pack, is great leadership, and in our constituency, we are lucky to have a number of excellent headteachers.

One of those is Caroline Mason, headteacher at Bidbury Junior School, who since taking over last autumn has implemented many initiatives focused on improving pupil results, wellbeing and mental health.

In addition, Caroline has just completed the Ambition School Leadership’s Future Leaders programme – designed for high-potential leaders who aim to become headteachers of schools in challenging contexts.

I visited Bidbury Junior School last week, and I was delighted to hear about the progress the school has made since Caroline took over. Her work is improving pupil outcomes, and putting the school back on a path to greater success.

By replicating this kind of leadership across the country, we can ensure that every single child has a great education – a goal both me and government are committed to achieving.

n Don’t forget nominations are now open for my third Havant Small Business Awards. Whether it’s a favourite cafe, pub or restaurant, a tradesman who has gone the extra mile, or a local business leader or apprentice who has inspired you, all nominations are welcome. Visit to find out more.