Principal's Letter - April 2021

Date Published:
Thursday 22 April 2021

Dear Parents/Carers,

I feel extremely privileged and excited to be embarking upon my role as Principal of Jesmond Park Academy and I look forward to getting to know all the students, staff and parents over the forthcoming months.

I wanted to take this opportunity to introduce myself to you, and to share my enthusiasm for the time ahead.  Previously the Principal of North Gosforth Academy, I spent 18 sometimes challenging, but very happy, years there and although sad to leave I am eager for the task ahead.

My philosophy for education is one based around inspiring students to be the best that they can be.  My passion is in building not only curiosity to encourage students to want to learn, but also in building resilience, so that students do not falter when they encounter adversity.  I am a great believer in careers education, to provide students with a vision of where their future may take them.  Young people are amazing and each have unique potential waiting to be unlocked.  It is a privilege, as a teacher and a leader, to be able to inspire, enthuse, motivate and nurture children to fully achieve that potential and together with the core values of honesty, respect and integrity I am committed to this for the students of Jesmond Park Academy.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the students, staff and governors of Jesmond Park Academy, who have already made a positive impression on me during my recent visits and who have made me feel incredibly welcome.    Seeing their enthusiasm and their love for their school has confirmed to me that I have made the correct decision in coming here as Principal.

It goes without saying that I want to build on the good work currently being done in school and which has been led well so well, under the most difficult circumstances, by Mr Paul Anderson and Mrs Claire Smith. Jesmond Park Academy has performed well in the last couple of years but I realise that due to the lack of a permanent headteacher throughout the last 4 ½ years, this time has also been a period of instability and uncertainty.  I intend to dedicate my time and energy to providing stability and to ensuring that we build on those solid foundations to make certain that Jesmond Park Academy becomes one of the best schools in the area.

I also want to raise the situation with regards to Covid 19 and the impact this has had on the school.  This has been an incredibly difficult time for all schools nationally, dealing with all the Covid controls, positive cases and testing procedures.  In a large school this is obviously very challenging, but it is my aim to start to bring the school out of the restrictions in this coming term so that we can look to return to what students would feel to be a ‘normal’ school experience by the start of July.  Obviously, we will always put the safety of students and staff at the top of our priorities and will develop our strategy based on advice from Public Health England.

Outstanding schools are created by students, staff, parents and governors working together to form a strong community that acts as one to nurture and develop the skills, enthusiasm and talent of the young people within it. It is a privilege to be joining a school with such a proud heritage and I am looking forward to joining you all on the journey to becoming outstanding. Jesmond Park is a school with unlimited potential and together we will continue to strive for the very best outcomes, socially, academically, morally, spiritually and emotionally for every single student at Jesmond Park Academy.  

Warm regards,