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Cwmbran High School’s two headteachers leaving due to ‘demands of planning a significant new build’ at their other school in Cardiff

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Cwmbran High School

The two executive headteachers brought in to support Cwmbran High School out of special measures have handed in their notice because of the ‘demands of planning a significant new build’ at their other school. The school has been in special measures since December 2018.

Diane Gill, Executive Headteacher and Matthew Cook, Head of School, started in Cwmbran in January 2021 as part of a ‘formal partnership between the school and Cantonian High School.‘ The pair will now leave at the end of the summer term.

In a letter to parents when she started Mrs Gill said: “I will be responsible for the strategic leadership of both schools, dividing my time between CHS and my current school, Cantonian, where I have been Headteacher for the past five years. During this time, I have been afforded the opportunity to lead the school from being underperforming to the excellent school community it is today, whereby all pupils achieve their potential. As a result, I have the necessary skills to drive rapid improvement at Cwmbran High School, to ensure it becomes an excellent school that serves the needs of all of the community.”

Letter to parents

The school’s governing body was replaced by an Interim Executive Board when it went into special measures. A letter sent to parents on 8 April 2022 from Janine English, chair, and Lyndon Puddy, vice chair, said: “I write to inform you that Mrs Gill, Executive Headteacher and Mr Cook, Head of School, will return to Cantonian High School earlier than originally planned due to the demands of planning a significant new build on the current Cantonian High School site.

“Mrs Gill and Mr Cook have made an extremely positive impression during their time at Cwmbran High School.  Their approach and vision ensure that we now have a very stable foundation on which we can continue to move forward.

“Although Mrs Gill and Mr Cook will be very much missed by pupils, staff, the IEB and the wider community, the timing is appropriate, in that we have now begun the process to seek a substantive Headteacher to join us at Cwmbran High School and lead the school on our continued journey out of special measures.

“We would like to take this opportunity to wish Mrs Gill and Mr Cook every success with the new build and everything that encompasses. We would also like to thank the parents/carers, learners and staff for their continued support and commitment and reassure you that sound progress is being made.

“We are excited by what the future holds for Cwmbran High School and look forward to continuing to support the school through this period of transition.”

Statement from Torfaen Council

A Torfaen Council spokesperson said: ‘The executive headteachers will finish their joint role at the end of the summer term and return to Cantonian High School. The Headteacher vacancy has been widely advertised and has now closed for applications. The shortlisting process has started and interviews will take place shortly with a new Headteacher appointed to start in time for the new academic year in September 2022.”




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Cwmbran High School’s two headteachers leaving due to ‘demands of planning a significant new build’ at their other school in Cardiff