New head of primary school takes up role

Headteacher Michael Walker with reception pupils Liberty Woodall and Ferdinand Clarkson.
Headteacher Michael Walker with reception pupils Liberty Woodall and Ferdinand Clarkson.

A new headteacher has been appointed at a Church of England primary school following the death of its former head.

Michael Walker took up the post at Ackworth Howard School last month. And he hopes to carry on the work of previous headteacher Lisa Metcalfe, who died in June, aged 45, following a short illness.

The late Lisa Metcalfe.

The late Lisa Metcalfe.

Mr Walker, 33, said: “The thing that attracted me to Ackworth Howard was the family feel of the school and its ethos of forgiveness, friendship, compassion and trust which is evident in all pupils.

“That is something that was very much developed by Lisa and something I want to continue.

“The work that she did led the school being given a ‘good’ judgement in its latest Ofsted inspection in May, up from ‘requiring improvement’ in 2014.

“And the school also received ‘outstanding’ in its Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools (SIAMS) inspection in June.

“As a school, we are trying to build on what Lisa has achieved, and develop and progress to become outstanding all around.”

Mr Walker started his career as a teacher in the Wakefield district, before spending three years as headteacher of Montagu Academy in Doncaster.

He said: “It’s good to be back in the district and I have really enjoyed my time so far.

“The staff, parents and governors have made me feel very welcome.”

One of the first projects Mr Walker is planning to oversee is the development of a peace garden in memory of Mrs Metcalfe.

He hopes staff and children will use the space to remember her as well as to take time out to sit and reflect.

Mr Walker is also looking to expand the school by launching a nursery next September, for children from the age of three.

Anyone who wants to register their interest in the nursery or find out more information is asked to call the school on 01977 722275.