Kineton’s headteacher is sad to leave

Kineton High School headteacherJulia Morris with pupils.
Kineton High School headteacherJulia Morris with pupils.

After 12 years of immersing herself in the “educational family” of Kineton High School, headteacher Julia Morris is feeling very sad about taking her retirement this month.

But the 60-year-old, who trained as a teacher in Brighton in the 1970s, feels it is the right time for her to pass on the baton.

With a warm attachment to the school, its students, staff and governors, Ms Morris is making sure she leaves in style - and has thrown a ‘reunion prom’ on Saturday with present and past colleagues.

Having joined as headteacher in September 2002, Ms Morris has seen a lot of changes. She said: “Results have transformed: last year we were in the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust list of top 20 per cent of schools for high attainment in end of Key Stage 4 and we were in the Financial Times’ top 1,000 schools list for post 16 performance.

“These things are a matter of great pride.”

Ms Morris is also particularly proud of the international relationships the school has formed since she took part in a British Council-led headteachers’ visit to Sri Lanka in 2006, as well as the sporting ethos the school has developed since it became a specialist sports college in 2003.

She said: “I think of the school as a family. Everyone here knows that Kineton High is their educational home. I will miss the students terribly.”

Although she is retiring as headteacher, the grandmother-of-four plans on doing freelance consultancy work on school leadership and she will also carry on with her role as an Ofsted inspector.

She said: “For me, it’s the right time to leave. Headship is very demanding and not a nine-to-five job - it’s a way of life.”

Siona Robson will take over as headteacher in September.