Petition to keep school’s principal

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PARENTS are calling on a Kettering academy to keep a teacher who helped turn the school’s fortunes around.

The principal of Kettering Science Academy’s primary phase, Anne O’Neill, is to leave her post after nearly five years in which she has helped improve the once-failing school.

The announcement of her leaving this Friday has angered dozens of parents who have signed a petition calling on the school to retain her service.

Parent Chloe Warren, 37, said: “There was no consultation, no talks with parents – just a letter that the teacher who turned this academy around was leaving.

“Since coming in she has put in place a structure which has brought success – the children all like her too.

“We obviously want her to continue heading the primary section and carry on the good work.”

Mrs Warren, who has two children at the academy, is meeting the executive principal of the Brooke Weston Partnership Sir Peter Simpson to discuss the situation on Friday.

Meanwhile, she has collected the signatures of 60 parents who want Ms O’Neill to stay.

They include Cheryl Taylor, 40, who said: “It came out of the blue she was going, it’s the last thing we wanted to hear.”

Yesterday, a spokesman for the academy confirmed Ms O’Neill was leaving at the end of the week – although he would not say if she was being made redundant.

Following her leaving the academy there will be a single management structure with both the primary and secondary sections coming under principal Martin Campbell.

Sir Peter said: “The sponsors of Kettering Science Academy are indebted to Anne for her work in establishing the primary phase and are grateful for the professional way in which she has led the structural, organisational and educational changes that have been necessary to improve the school.

“That the primary phase is no longer subject to special measures is due to her management and leadership of the staff and students.

“We recognise the debt we owe to Anne.”

The academy was established following the merger of Ise Community College and Henry Gotch Primary School in 2009.

In October, the academy was judged ‘satisfactory’ by Ofsted inspectors who said it was improving.