THE Oaktree School and The Hermitage School in St John’s have welcomed Clare Spires as their executive headteacher, writes Len Walker.

Mrs Spires took up the position at the beginning of the academic year and is looking forward to working with staff, pupils and the community.

Both are part of the SWAN Trust, a group of six local schools who believe that school-to-school support and collaboration will improve the quality of learning.

Oaktree caters for pupils aged from two to seven years, and The Hermitage School for ages seven to 11.

The new head brings her experience of 23 years’ teaching in local schools, including seven successful years as headteacher at the Barnsbury Primary School and Nursery, in Almond Avenue.

Mrs Spires said: “I feel extremely privileged to have been appointed to build upon the success of these two schools and I am excited about leading them through the next phase of their development.

“In these first few weeks of the new school year staff have already begun to explore ways in which the two schools can work more collaboratively.

“We will begin to utilise and build upon each schools’ strengths, benefit from shared resources and facilities, strengthen the educational provision for every child and improve the support for the parents and local community in the process.

“My main role is to make sure that every child at The Oaktree and The Hermitage schools feels safe, happy and succeeds in their achievements.

“I believe children should feel inspired and supported when they are learning. They will achieve well if they are clear about what is expected of them and the steps they need to get there.

“With both schools collaborating we can support each child’s learning journey.”