TV head relieved to be out of national spotlight

THE HEAD TEACHER made famous by a television documentary series about his school says he was impressed with the opening night of the follow-up series Educating the East End.

The latest documentary on Channel 4 is a follow-up to the original Educating Essex show and the second series Educating Yorkshire which captured life inside Thornhill Community Academy, near Dewsbury.

Thornhill’s head teacher Jonny Mitchell said he had loved the new series and was relieved to be able to watch the programme without the spotlight being on his school.

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The cameras showed life inside Frederick Bremer School in Walthamstow, East London. Educating the East End introduced viewers to head teacher Jenny Smith and an English teacher Mr Bispham who has been in the profession for 18 months and is shown coming to terms with the difficulties of teaching a class of 14-year-olds.

Mr Mitchell said: “I really enjoyed the show. It again showed the extent to which teachers are prepared to bend over backwards to support their students.

“I think you could tell from the programme that it is a good school and that the ethos is right. I particularly enjoyed the part following the English teacher who was willing to have the result of his lesson evaluations shown on the air.

“And there was a different feel to it compared to Educating Yorkshire. I think this was important as they wouldn’t have wanted to do another Educating show which was the same as ours.”

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Educating Yorkshire captured TV audiences of more than three million and has since won a string of television awards. It changed the school’s profile with Mr Mitchell and other teachers who featured such as Matthew Burton and Michael Steer becoming TV stars.

It has also seen an increase in pupils applying to join the school since it featured on the show.