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New headteacher promises “significant changes” at Kirk Hallam Academy

Kirk Hallam Community Academy's new headteacher Mark Watts.
Kirk Hallam Community Academy's new headteacher Mark Watts.

Kirk Hallam Community Academy has revealed the identity of its next headteacher, who will ring the changes for a new era starting this September.

Mark Watts is joining the school from the Nottingham University Samworth Academy where he has been headteacher since 2013.

Kirk Hallam Community Academy new head Mark Watts with year sevens Lucy Matthewman, Georgia Trussel, Harley Watson, Riley Boot and Taylor Hartwright.

Kirk Hallam Community Academy new head Mark Watts with year sevens Lucy Matthewman, Georgia Trussel, Harley Watson, Riley Boot and Taylor Hartwright.

He said: “Having spent time here in the last few weeks, I am struck by the incredible sense of community and potential at Kirk Hallam.

“I sense a real desire among students and staff to move the school forward and embrace changes that will result in better educational outcomes for all our learners and offer them the very best start in life.”

In his time at Samworth, Mark led the school out of Special Measures status to an Ofsted rating of Good — an experience Mark believes will be invaluable in his new post.

He said: “With the support of the governors and the school community, I will begin making significant changes at Kirk Hallam from September.

Riley Boot and Lucy Matthewman show off the new uniform which will be introduced in September. Lucy said: "The new uniform is light and comfortable. I definitely think it looks much smarter."

Riley Boot and Lucy Matthewman show off the new uniform which will be introduced in September. Lucy said: "The new uniform is light and comfortable. I definitely think it looks much smarter."

“This is a school with a proud history and its students have huge potential. Over the next few years we will work tirelessly to realise that potential and deliver a school that the community deserves and can be proud of.”

One of the biggest changes will see the academy join the Nova Education Trust, a family of 14 schools based in Nottinghamshire.

Chair of governors Melanie Lawson said: “After meeting a number of education trusts in the last year, we felt Nova most closely matched Kirk Hallam’s aspirations and ambitions and had a proven track record of school improvement.”

With the trust’s support, Mark will initially focus on improving the quality of behaviour, student attainment and teaching to create a new organisational culture which better engages students and the wider community.

He said: “This process will take time and requires some hard decisions to be made but I can assure parents and students that we will not be deflected from our clear aim of delivering a school that the community deserves.

“I look forward to meeting students and parents over the next year as we begin to transform the academy.”

In a first step, the school council and governors have worked together to design and introduce a new uniform and badge for September.

To help support families with this change, this year Kirk Hallam will be providing a free tie and blazer for every student so they return for the autumn term fully prepared.

Other items can be ordered via https://goo.gl/F1xesH.