Terry Butterworth, who has died in a hiking accident in the Scottish Highlands, was the former headteacher of the Campsmount and Adwick schools in Doncaster.
A keen and experienced hiker, he was a regular competitor in a challenge known as the Fellsman, a gruelling 60-mile walking and running course across some of the country’s toughest terrain and held annually in Yorkshire.
He had begun his teaching career in Bolton in the 1960s before moving to Chorley and then Derbyshire. He arrived in Doncaster in 1988, taking charge of Campsmount School in the Norton rea.
He spent 10 years as head there before being appointed to take charge of what was then the failing school at Adwick, after it was put in special measures. Teachers were said to have had faced a torrent of abuse from youngsters whom regulators described as “out of control.”
Mr Butterworth took a radical and no-nonsense approach to turn the school around. When a group of troublemakers aged from 12 to 15 refused to tow the line, he reportedly expelled 18 in one afternoon, as well as giving 36 their final warning. Within three years he had removed 50 children.
“I had to do something for the sake of the education of the majority,” he said. Invoking a mountaineering analogy, he added: “This school has got to go up Mont Blanc. That is the challenge ahead. At the moment, we’ve managed only to climb Ben Nevis.”
Following his stint at Adwick, he became and educational consultant and was part of a team advising secondary schools across Derbyshire and Yorkshire.