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Crawley's newest school The Gatwick School to have 2 head teachers

By Crawley News  |  Posted: November 17, 2013

  • CONVERSION: The offices that will be transformed into Crawley's newest school; inset, Paul Reilly, left, and Simon Ruscoe-Price

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THE individuals who will be in charge of Crawley's first ever all-through school have been appointed.

The Gatwick School, which was previously going to be called Crawley Free School, has announced it will have an executive head teacher and a head of its secondary school when it opens next September.

Paul Reilly has taken on the position of executive head and Simon Ruscoe-Price will be the secondary head.

The school is due to be created on Gatwick Road, in Manor Royal, by converting vacant offices.

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An executive head has responsibility for more than one school and Mr Reilly will combine his position at the new school with his existing role at Glenleigh Park Primary Academy, in Bexhill.

The 45-year-old has 23 years of teaching experience, including ten as a head teacher.

He said: "The executive head role is being brought in more and more across England.

"I have experience of running very large schools, so the prospect of establishing a brand new school while remaining in charge of another does not faze me."

In the school's first year Mr Reilly will also oversee the primary section of the school, before a full time primary head takes over.

The school is a partnership between two educational organisations, Place Group and Mosaica Education, which runs the Aurora Academies Trust of which Glenleigh Park is part.

Mosaica runs schools in the US, Dubai and India, and The Gatwick School will make the most of these international connections with an emphasis on business and enterprise, science and technology.

Mr Reilly added: "We want to provide a global education for our students so they can interact with their peers in America, the United Arab Emirates or even closer to home in Bexhill, using technology to learn about different cultures.

"We have a modern, spacious school site with two great cuboid-shaped buildings offering a remarkable amount of floor space. While there aren't on-site fields we have plenty of space to transform into play areas and sports halls. We are looking to be able to use green areas nearby."

Mr Reilly adds that having primary and secondary students on the same site will have massive benefits.

He explained: "Leaving primary school to enter a brand new secondary environment can be traumatic for children, but here they get to understand how we work over 12 years.

"We have already received a healthy number of applications from across the county borders.

"It is not only Crawley families interested."

Mr Ruscoe-Price, who has previously spent nine years as an assistant head teacher, is currently working for Mosaica Education as a specialist adviser to its schools in India.

They will both spend time before the school opens meeting parents, developing the curriculum and recruiting staff.

The school will initially open with a reception year of 60 pupils and a Year 7 of 120 students.

When full it will have a total of 1,020 students between the ages of 4 and 16.

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  • Richard20101  |  November 17 2013, 11:19AM

    WSCC Local Education Authority (LEA) Schools, like NHS Hospitals cannot be run like private corporations, with "executive" headteacher. Schools (Education) and Hospitals (Health) should, and must, be a Public Service, not a Private Enterprise. Our children and young people deserve a good education, not a politically-motivated indoctrination programme. I predict the Discovery "Free" School at Broadfield House will close when the Gatwick "Free" School is open. I don't think either should be open at all. We have a Local Education Authority - West Sussex County Council (WSCC) in Chichester (paid for by us the taxpayer) - responsible for our children's education in Crawley schools. WSCC should be doing the job we pay them to do - not 'farming out' our children's education for corporate profit. Education. Education. Education - not - Indoctrination. Indoctrination. Indoctrination. "Don't let it happen. It depends on you" (George Orwell's last-known published words).