Edgar Wood Academy Appoints Experienced and Successful Headteacher to lead the school in its next stage

News - 19 January 2024

Edgar Wood Academy is delighted to announce the appointment of its new Headteacher, Paul Jones, who started his role at the school in January. He comes to Edgar Wood from Oasis Leesbrook where he was head of school at the Ofsted Grade 2 school.

Upon his appointment, Mr Jones said, “I am delighted to be the Headteacher of Edgar Wood Academy. It’s such a vibrant and exciting place to lead. The students and staff are incredible – there really is a huge amount of talent in the school.”

The academy received an Ofsted inspection in November, which led to a ‘Requires Improvement’ grade. This came following a period of transition for the academy’s leadership following the retirement of the previous Headteacher. 

Mr Jones commented, “While disappointed in the school’s inspection grade, I am confident that we know what we need to do to improve. We are now obviously working hard to address the issues raised in the report. Indeed, at the time of the inspection, the school was already putting in place a new approach to behaviour, which students are responding extremely well to.”

The Headteacher also took care to highlight the strengths that were recognised in the Ofsted report, particularly the high standards the Trust and school have for their approach to students’ wellbeing. “This is against a national picture in which issue of poor mental health has become increasingly prevalent following the pandemic,” Mr Jones said. “It is a testament to the pastoral commitment of our dedicated staff that pupils ‘know how to look after themselves when under stress or if they are sad’ and that they ‘are well cared for by staff.’”

Inspectors also praised the many opportunities students have to develop skills outside of the classroom at Edgar Wood. They say that ‘the programme to promote pupils’ wider development is strong’ and that students ‘relish opportunities to learn how to crochet, write short stories and develop their debating skills’. These experiences, as well as opportunities to learn about future education and employment choices ‘help to raise pupils’ aspirations’. 

Mr Jones also commented, “While I fully acknowledge that the report does not reflect where we want to be, I firmly believe our current actions and the strengths outlined in the report provide us with a firm foundation to allow all of our pupils to reach their true potential, particularly as we prepare for our first ever GCSE results in 2026. Additionally, it is a firm commitment of mine that all students receive a consistently excellent experience in the classroom and I am dedicated to ensuring that the quality of teaching in the best lessons is the quality of teaching in all lessons.”

Richard Ronksley, CEO of Altus Education Partnership, said, “We are proud of the progress that has been made at the school and, at the time of inspection, we were already in the early stages of implementing a number of the changes subsequently recommended by the report, including providing more detailed information to every level of the school and Trust. In our new headteacher, Paul Jones, we have an experienced and successful leader at Edgar Wood, and we are confident that the school will build on its strengths and address those areas of development so that all young people who pass through its doors experience an exciting, kind, and fulfilling time at the school.”