THE new man in charge of a primary school in Batley says he is determined to make it the best in town.
Andrew Midgley was brought in to Carlinghow Princess Royal Junior, Infant and Nursery School as interim headteacher just before Christmas to help turn its fortunes around after a damning Ofsted report.
After just two days in the role Mr Midgley was preparing for another Ofsted visit – the first special measures monitoring inspection since it was rated as inadequate the previous year.
The subsequent report said that, among other issues, leaders and managers weren’t taking effective action towards the removal of special measures and that pupils weren’t making enough progress.
Former head Andrew Wilcock has since left the school and the board of governors have stood down. And Mr Midgley, who works for the Greetland Multi Academy Trust which Carlinghow will be joining in March, is putting all his effort into helping the school get out of special measures.
He said: “The community need reassurance that this school is going to go from strength to strength.
“I had my first headship in 2007 and was in a school in Ovenden which was bottom of the league table.
“We turned that around and within four years of me being head we got a letter from the Secretary of State saying our school was in the top 50 in England for sustained improvement.
“My track record is working at schools in challenging areas, with challenging circumstances and moving them up.
“This is my fourth headship and when (Carlinghow) joins the trust in March it’s got free access to wonderful resources – there’s a lot of hope for this school.”
Mr Midgley arrives at school for 7am every day, working through break and lunch and not leaving until early evening – because he says “this school needs it right now”.
And although his job is only temporary, he won’t be leaving until a new headteacher is in place.
He said: “I’m very optimistic about the future here because I would hate for me to work my backside off to then see it go to waste. I want this school to be the best school in Batley.
“The bottom line is the school was rightfully judged to be in a bad place and the school has already significantly improved and has got the potential to be even better.
“We are determined that this school will be a success.”