Castle Vale School: Charlotte Blencowe named as new headteacher


Charlotte Blencowe

The new headteacher of Castle Vale School is to be Charlotte Blencowe. She is a former Conservative Party candidate for Rotherham Council in Yorkshire. She tried to launch a free school in Rotherham in 2010, but despite initial approval from Education Secretary Michael Gove, it failed to get off the ground. She had enlisted her partner’s father, Barry Elliot, better known as one of the Chuckle Brothers, to be its patron. She had hoped to become its principal, but an inquiry revealed that the controversial plans lacked any firm basis.
More recently, she has been Acting Principal of Academy 360, a school in Sunderland. Ofsted Inspectors had previously given Academy 360 a ‘notice to improve’ last April, but following a visit last December, they commented on the progress that the school had made under the new leadership. “Poor behaviour is more swiftly dealt with because new management procedures are more consistently applied,” said the Ofsted Inspector.
AET (Academies Enterprise Trust) have indicated that her appointment at Castle Vale School is permanent. It is not yet clear how many governors were consulted in the appointment process.
Charlotte Blencowe is due to meet Castle Vale School’s staff next week.

Charlotte Blencowe with Barry Chuckle

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14 responses to “Castle Vale School: Charlotte Blencowe named as new headteacher

  1. Big brummie

    Charlotte: To me
    Clive: To you!

  2. I cannot begin to explain how dismayed I am to hear of this appointment without due consideration for the rigorous processes these sorts of things are subject to in the real world. If the governors have not been consulted this is criminal. That school needs the very best – it does not need a snap decision appointment of someone who has no real knowledge of the school or the community it is part of. This community should hold the AET to account and demand an explanation.

  3. No consultation just a decision made. What will the striking staff and NASUWT have to say about this decision!

  4. Just another reason my children will be going to any school other than this one

  5. Appointed and as far as I’m aware she hasn’t even put foot inside the school yet. Who gets a high flying job at a place they haven’t even visited? AET certainly need to answer as to how they can appoint a new head teacher for the school without reference to governors and the community as a whole.

  6. Wow are you people ever satisfied? You all moaned for the head to go and he is! Who knows what kind of impact the new head will have on the school, she may bring a positive and quick turn around but she can’t do this on her own EVERYBODY needs to be on board, do their part and work together to help make a bad situation better. So instead of constantly misinformed moaning on here, spend your time better by showing support and encouragement to your school and community. She hasn’t even got through the door yet so at least give her a chance to do her job and prove herself before sticking your over used knives in!

  7. Why would the Governors have any say in this, they haven’t exactly been making the right choices for the school have they. They will all be replaced under AET anyway and have a new board of Governors in post. Onwards and upwards. If you really want your say go to the public meeting at 6pm on Wednesday 27th at the school.

  8. Oh lord , give thé god damn school a chance to turn around , a new name , new head , fresh new start , … Durr hello , stop criticising thé school .

  9. Dear Charlotte,
    Let me reassure you that you will receive a warm and generous welcome from the vast majority of people from this estate.
    The children are keen to learn and want to do well. The vast majority understand the importance of education, behave responsibly and enjoy their time at school. They are very generous by nature and look out and support each other. They want to be proud of their school.
    The teachers and support staff are first class. They do a great job and are dedicated and skilled professionals. They care about the children and are determined and eager for them to well. They look for a leader that will give the school a clear sense of direction and provide the environment that will allow them to teach and pupils to learn. They want someone who will listen, encourage talent, and value a breadth of skills. They seek a leader who will build teams and actively develop staff to make them as good as they can be. They want to be well led.
    Parents care about the school and understandably so. They look for a headteacher that will work in partnership with them to make sure their children get the best education possible. They need to feel they can trust the school and so will hope for consultation when appropriate but certainly for clear communications about the changes that you will bring about in the school. Above all, they want you to reinstate their confidence in the school. They are entitled to nothing less.
    The community is striving hard to make things as good as they can be for all who live and work on the Vale. It sees the schools on the estate as of huge importance in building a successful and vibrant community. They are right and they will be keen to work with you.
    Thank you for coming and helping us.
    I, and many others, wish you every success.

    Sincerely,
    the vast majority of fair minded people associated with the school

  10. I’d be interested to know what teaching experience she has, if none then managerial experience is not enough to run a school. It would be like an electrician showing a hairdresser how to cut hair and vice versa.

  11. I’m a pupil at Castle Vale School, and recently we’ve been in the news for negative stuff, so I’m glad we’re in the news for something positive for once. When I see her in September I’m gonna chuckle and laugh everytime I see her. LOL.

  12. Like others who have posted on this post, I would like to know what experience she has in teaching secondary education. To me it’s like randomly picking up a bingo ball with Charlotte’s face on it out of a game of bingo. I hope they’ve chose wisely, because our education is at risk.

  13. Whilst I totally agree that Ms. Blencowe should be given a chance, and needs the full support of the whole school community, you do have to question whether due process was followed. The track record of The 360 Academy is that it is one of the lowest achieving schools in the country, and currently there is no dataset that suggests anything else. I am delighted OFSTED feel the school is improving and I’m sure results will be better this year, but can that really be judged on a monitoring visit 3 months after those disasterous results were achieved at 360 last August. One swallow doesn’t make a Summer. Surely, with a big enough incentive, there would be a Headteacher out there with a proven track record willing to take on the exciting challenge of turning Castle Vale Around.
    My instinct tells me this approach will have an instant impact, yes, but will it be sustainable. For the sake of the children, and the Castle Vale Community, I hope this is not another short lived “pet-project” for Ms Blencowe and AET.
    I wish her all the best in her new venture.

  14. It’s not as if the new head is without experience. What turns a school around can be a combination of factors. If she can attract (or bring with her) a bit of extra clout, support, investment then good on her.
    Let’s get behind her, wish her well and avoid turning negative the first time we consider she has not quite got it right.
    Turning this place around will take courage, community support and inspirational leadersip. A few eggs may get broken in the process but so be it. The school, the students, the teachers, the community need it to work.
    I wish her and the school every success in the future.