Headteacher leaves as Kesteven and Sleaford High School joins Carre’s multi-academy trust

Outgoing headteacher of Kesteven and Sleaford High School, Craig Booker. EMN-150109-164729001
Outgoing headteacher of Kesteven and Sleaford High School, Craig Booker. EMN-150109-164729001

Kesteven and Sleaford High School has now officially become part of the multi-academy trust set up by Carre’s Grammar School.

In a move announced today (Tuesday) by the High School’s new chairman of governors, Deborah Hopkins, it was also announced that headteacher Craig Booker had also opted to leave during the summer break.

New interim Head of School for Kesteven and Sleaford High School, Josephine Smith. EMN-150109-164718001

New interim Head of School for Kesteven and Sleaford High School, Josephine Smith. EMN-150109-164718001

Mrs Hopkins said in an emailed letter to parents: “During July and August, and further to the consultation we held earlier in the year, work has continued to develop the school’s collaborative working with other local schools, particularly Carre’s Grammar School. Today we officially become part of the Robert Carre Multi Academy Trust, an exciting and significant step forward for education in Sleaford.”

She went on: “Craig Booker worked very hard as headteacher, over a period of months, to achieve this status for the school but sadly decided to leave the school this summer. The school has been extremely fortunate to have had such a loyal, dedicated and inspirational headteacher who achieved much in his time at the school. We would like to thank him and send him our best wishes as he progresses on his chosen career path.”

Deputy head, Josephine Smith, has agreed to take on the role of interim Head of School, having worked closely with Mr Booker since her appointment to the school as sole Deputy Headteacher three years ago.

She had also been a Deputy Head in her previous school.

The school has been extremely fortunate to have had such a loyal, dedicated and inspirational headteacher who achieved much in his time at the school.

Deborah Hopkins, new chairman of governors of Kesteven and Sleaford High School

Mrs Hopkins said: “Mrs Smith will continue to be ably supported by the existing experienced School Leadership team as well as by staff and Governors.”

Mrs Smith told The Standard: “Being part of the Robert Carre Trust will provide pupils in Sleaford and the surrounding area with access to the very best opportunities. We look forward to working closely with the Trust to ensure that our pupils continue to benefit from the excellent teaching and support they are accustomed to.

“Wider options choices in the Sixth Form, collaborative learning and extra-curricular learning opportunities are all likely to be the result of working closely with other schools. At the same time pupils can expect school life at the High School to retain all the customs and opportunities they are used to. We are looking forward to the new school year and celebrating all the pupils’ achievements that will inevitably follow.”

Joining the Multi Academy Trust means some changes to governance structures at the school too.

Stock images.
Kesteven and Sleaford High School sign.

Stock images. Kesteven and Sleaford High School sign.

Robin Baker, among others, will be representing the High School on the Trust as well as at board level and therefore could not also remain as the High School’s chairman of governors.

Mrs Hopkins said: “He has worked with real commitment over several years and I thank him for his huge contribution.”

As the newly elected chairman, she said: “I am a parent of a current Year 7 pupil at the school, have an older daughter who has progressed through the school and have been a Governor since 2003 in three different schools: ten of those have been as chairman or vice chairman.

“I very much look forward to meeting staff and parents at school events in coming months.”

Under the new Trust, the two schools would continue to operate on their current sites, sharing facilities and staff.

It is envisaged that the three school Sleaford Joint Sixth Form, including St George’s Academy, would be revived, after the High School split from it in 2010.

Commenting previously on the plan, Carre’s headteacher Nick Law said: “We see there are many economies of scale to be achieved by working together more closely. At the same time we want to retain each school as a separate entity so we can preserve its own unique identity and ethos.”