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Ipswich: Head of Ipswich Academy, Nancy Robinson, steps down from her role

16:19 09 September 2014

Pupils and Staff at Ipswich Academy as they moved into their new building Academy Head Nancy Robinson with Rafaels Bazilevics, Julija Plavane, Kimberley Bigg, Shane Slinn and Kelan Moore.

Pupils and Staff at Ipswich Academy as they moved into their new building Academy Head Nancy Robinson with Rafaels Bazilevics, Julija Plavane, Kimberley Bigg, Shane Slinn and Kelan Moore.

The principal of an Ipswich school labelled inadequate by Ofsted has resigned from her role just days into the start of the new academic year, it was announced yesterday.

Nancy RobinsonNancy Robinson

Nancy Robinson had been in charge at Ipswich Academy, formerly Holywells High School, for four years and oversaw its transformation to academy status and the move to its new £16million state-of-the-art building in Braziers Wood Road.

The move came just months after a damning Ofsted inspection criticised areas including teaching quality and student progress.

According to the academy’s sponsor, the Learning Schools Trust, Ms Robinson was on site at the beginning of the year, but has now decided to step down.

Ms Robinson said: “I wish the staff and students at Ipswich Academy well. I have very much enjoyed my time in the school in what is a truly wonderful supportive community.


May 2010 – Nancy Robinson announced as principal ahead of school’s move to academy status

March 2011 – Holywells High School officially becomes an academy. It is renamed Ipswich Academy

April 2011 – students get a new uniform

2011 – The academy establishes a sixth form

March 2012 – Proposals for the new Ipswich Academy complex are submitted to borough planners

July 2013 – an Ofsted inspection reveals several concerning areas for the school

August 2013 – The academy saw its GCSE five A*-C pass rate, including maths and English, increase to 31%

November 2013 – Education Secretary, Michael Gove opens the new building

June 2014 – A follow-up inspection finds the school still has weaknesses

August 2014 – Proportion of A-level grades awarded at A*-C at the academy stands at 58%. The school did not reveal its GCSE results

September 2014 – Nancy Robinson steps down

“I am confident that the Leadership team can make the important improvements that are needed at the Academy to deliver great outcomes for all students.

“I look forward to seeing the accelerated progress which all involved deserve and which I know will happen over the coming year.”

Announcing the news, Steve Bolingbroke, chief executive of the trust, added: “Nancy decided after four years running the academy that she wanted to stand down as principal.

“There has been a huge period of change and she has helped to put the basics in place and now she has decided to move on.

“A good school is more than just the principal. There is a loyal and talented teaching staff and a great leadership team taking this school forward, just one member of that team has changed.”

Despite the critical Ofsted report, the school did post a rise in GCSE results last summer, however this year’s grades were not released by the school.

Following the resignation of Ms Robinson, the trust announced that Pamela Hutchison would be installed as the new executive principal.

She is currently the principal of another academy within the trust but will spend the majority of her time in Ipswich in an effort to turn around the fortunes of the institution.

The trust will then focus on the long term leadership of the school

Mr Bolingbroke said: “She is a very experienced lady who has taken three schools out of serious weaknesses and turned them around.

“She will be great for the school in its current situation. She has been working with us on a number of strategies.

“We have got a lot of important things to do quickly and the important thing now is fixing those things as quickly as possible.”

In the months since its critical Ofsted report, Ipswich Academy has had monitoring inspections, in which it has been said the school still has major improvements to make.

Mr Bolingbroke reaffirmed the trust’s commitment to improving Ipswich Academy and when asked whether it was hoped the academy could become outstanding or good, he said: “It is not a hope, it is what we want to do.”



    Report this comment


    Sunday, September 14, 2014

  • Whilst its never nice when somebody feels it necessary to step down , it is essential we offer our children the best quality teachers lead by a motivated and inspirational head teacher. So often we read about teachers heads who quite clearly fail miserably to achieve levels of acceptance, you have to ask the question why....You have to lay the blame squarely at the door of those who appoint them, who clearly are out of their depth knowing how to spot a good candidate and achieving the results we all require. This rarely happens in the Private sector, why????....One can only reach the conclusion some of these appointments are politically inspired rather than ones ability. There is no question the head of Ofsted is a no nonsense man , who tells the truth as achieved by results rather than local council politics!!

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    keith hawes

    Thursday, September 11, 2014

  • Not before time. Long overdue

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    Jacob Burns

    Tuesday, September 9, 2014

  • Get paid for a long summer holiday and then leave?

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, September 9, 2014

  • She was probably asked to resign by County. A case of go now or be sacked with no recompense. Its happening all the time in Suffolk now under this 'raising the bar' initiative. Headteachers have no option than to take the wack for everything. As the previous comment, even if they get absolutely no back up from home...its still their fault.

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    Tuesday, September 9, 2014

  • More like she was sacked ! They need some one with balls and that takes no rubbish from anyone .perhaps I'm to old school .i have got a child at the school .but it's not all down to the school and they can only do what they can with the back up from parents .but when the back up isn't there it's very much a one way street !

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, September 9, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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