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Principal heads to neighbour academy

Reporter: Karen Doherty
Date online: 08 May 2014

PRINCIPAL Colette Burgess is leaving Oldham Academy North — to move three miles up the road to the top job at Waterhead Academy.

Ms Burgess will start at Waterhead in September, four years after joining Oldham Academy North as designate principal. She oversaw the creation of the academy, which replaced Grange School in September 2010, and moved to a new £16.8 million building in Royton last April.

E-ACT, the chain which runs Oldham Academy North, was stripped of 10 of its academies earlier this year over concerns about education standards.

The organisation was later condemned by education watchdog Ofsted for failing to give children a good education in 11 of its schools. Oldham Academy North wasn’t involved in either criticism.

Ms Burgess (47) said E-ACT’s troubles didn’t prompt her departure.

“Making the decision to move to a new school was very difficult. But I feel now is the time to take on new challenges,” she explained.

“I am extremely proud of what has been achieved at Oldham Academy North and will bring the same commitment to excellence to Waterhead.”

Waterhead Academy was judged as requiring improvement by Ofsted in January 2013. Two months later inspectors found effective action to improve was being taken.

Ms Burgess takes over from Nigel McQuoid who announced his departure in January.

Comments

I am deeply disappointed.

This was the perfect opportunity for the governors to appoint a world class head with experience of leading a high achieving educational institution on a long term basis.

Colette will be the 7th head of this institution in less than 10 years since David Clifford was allowed to resign.

I for one will not be surprised if we are not saying roll on number 8 in 18 months time.

Oldham's £multi-million new Academies seem to be problematic -
& being independant of Oldham Council there's little the latter can do .
As a 1960s beneficiary ( 3 Alevels ) of Oldham's Greenhill Grammar School, I say that "gift" of a good education made my life
- becoming a Member of The Royal Town Planning Institute, & retiring on a comfortable superannuation 20 years ago .
Education is too important to be messed about with -
as the remorseless decline of Oldham proves.

 

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