Headteacher of struggling school to step down this week

A new leadership team has been brought in at a struggling Scarborough school following the sudden retirement of its headteacher.

Helen McEvoy, 57, announced she will be stepping down from her post at Graham School at the end of this week so its new bosses can get to know the school before the end of the academic year.

It comes ahead of the publication of its latest Ofsted report after inspectors visited the school earlier this month.

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She said: “I am proud of my time at Graham School, of the students and of those colleagues who have been passionate and committed to the young people and their learning. I retire confident that I leave the school in good hands, with a strong and effective team. As the school moves forward I wish everyone concerned great success, especially the students who deserve no less.”

A team of experienced school leaders will be joining the school after half term to take the school forward. North Yorkshire County Council and governors have secured support from The Yorkshire Teaching School Alliance (YTSA), led by Rob Pritchard, the alliance’s lead for school to school support and headteacher of St John Fisher Catholic High School, in Harrogate. A National Leader of Education and an Ofsted inspector, Mr Pritchard has recently overseen improvement in several schools, most recently at Easingwold. He will bring in a team of senior leaders, including Paul Brockwell, who will be the new headteacher.

Mrs McEvoy was appointed as headteacher in January 2014 to turn the tides of the school after it was placed in special measures following an ‘inadequate’ Ofsted rating. It made “significant improvements” under Mrs McEvoy, according to Ofsted when it returned for an inspection in November 2015, however it was given an overall rating of ‘requires improvement’. In January the school was visited again by inspectors following complaints about the leadership and management of pupils’ personal development, behaviour and welfare.