Special measures school to get new head

A PRIMARY school placed on special measures a year ago is about to welcome a new headteacher.Aldeburgh primary has been working hard since receiving the shock news last year it was being placed under special measures for falling standards.

By Sarah Chambers

A PRIMARY school placed on special measures a year ago is about to welcome a new headteacher.

Aldeburgh primary has been working hard since receiving the shock news last year it was being placed under special measures for falling standards. It has since had positive feedback from inspectors.

Acting headteacher Joanne Rope-Jones took over last year following the resignation of its previous head David Greenacre, and has been presiding over changes at the school aimed at getting the measures lifted.


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She will hand over the reins to Linda Berry, currently head at Wetheringsett primary, after the Easter holidays.

Mrs Berry, a former professional singer who trained at Aldeburgh under Nancy Evans, has a strong association with the town and said she was looking forward to working there.

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She also has a family connection with Aldeburgh. Various members of her husband's family have lived there, including his uncle, the Reverend Michael Berry who died just before Christmas.

The school has a new music room currently being built, and Mrs Berry said she was "terribly excited" about the musical connections.

Mrs Berry has been to the school and worked there in the past in a consultancy capacity. She was confident it would come out of special measures.

"You give us time, we'll sort it. It's already moving in a very favourable direction – it's already on the road," she said. "It's a wonderful school."

Mrs Rope-Jones, who in the long term is planning to move to Kent, said the school had positive feedback from an HMI visit in December.

"The staff are absolutely delighted," said Mrs Rope-Jones. "We were delighted with the last HMI report and he's coming again in a few weeks' time."

The HMI report said the school had made "good progress" since the last inspection. It also praised leadership within the school, saying it had "established a strong team spirit" and that there was a "distinctly stronger leadership at all levels, including in the classrooms".

Although there was no indication yet of when the measures might be lifted, she was confident they would be, "hopefully sooner rather than later".

There would be a handover period during the latter part of the Easter holiday where the new head would come in.

The next HMI inspection is due to take place towards the end of this month .

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