New head rewarded for her work in holding the village school fort

New head Debbie McLeod with pupils, left to right, Jessica Ellis, Jack Wheatley, Jamie Gardner, Finlay Wood and Elizabeth Sansome

New head Debbie McLeod with pupils, left to right, Jessica Ellis, Jack Wheatley, Jamie Gardner, Finlay Wood and Elizabeth Sansome

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Education Reporter, also covering West Oxford. Call me on (01865) 425437

A NEW headteacher has taken up the reins of a village primary school.

Debbie McLeod was appointed last Tuesday to replace Joanne Daly, who left the school in December to take up a post with the Diocese of Oxford.

Mrs McLeod has worked at Fritwell CofE Primary School for the past four years as deputy headteacher.

The school, in East Street, Fritwell, near Bicester, has 176 pupils on the roll. It was rated good by Ofsted when it was inspected in March last year.

Mrs McLeod said she was excited to be taking on the role, which she had been covering on a temporary basis since Mrs Daly’s departure at the end of last year.

She said: “I am not looking to make any big changes this year.

“We are making sure that the 2014 curriculum is as engaging and inspiring as it has already been in the last three or four years.”

She added: “There are quite a few changes going on at the moment across education, such as performance-related pay, and there might be the legislation they bring in about free school meals, which may mean we will have to look at resources if it takes place.

“But the school’s priority is our children.”

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Mrs McLeod said the school was a tight-knit family, adding: “We try to do as much to involve the community as we can and we really want to continue to have that role within the community.

“We want to keep our numbers up but we will still continue to stay a single form entry.

“I think among my most precious resources are the governing body and the teachers.”

Chairman of governors Duncan Sansome said: “Following a rigorous selection programme, which included leading school worship, teaching observation and feedback, school council interview, a presentation to governors and multiple interviews, the selection panel was unanimous in choosing Mrs McLeod.

“We know Mrs McLeod’s energy, commitment and ideas are exactly what Fritwell School needs, to take it forward into the next stage of its development.”

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