One of Dorset’s leading educators has been appointed to lead Bournemouth’s first free school.
Alex Prout takes on the role of Executive Head Teacher at Parkfield School from Terry Conaghan, who is on long-term sick leave.
Graham Exon, the chair of Parkfield’s Interim Academy Board (IAB), said: “We are pleased to announce the appointment of an experienced Interim Executive Head Teacher whilst Mr Conaghan remains on sick leave.
“Ms Prout is a National Leader of Education and the Director of Primary Education at Ambitions Academy Trust (AAT) and has vast experience of school improvement.
“She will take up the leadership of Parkfield School from today (Monday, 12th September), with the support of staff, the IAB, and the Department for Education.”
Ms Prout said: “It is a privilege and honour to be taking the helm of Bournemouth’s first and only free school.
“Parkfield is a publicly funded and independent free school founded on solid educational principles with a forward-thinking ethos.
“It is the passionate aim of my colleagues and I to equip the children with the learning and skills they need to find their way in our modern world.
“With the support of the IAB, colleagues and the Department for Education I look forward to delivering an outstanding education to all of Parkfield’s pupils, from the youngest to the eldest.”
Ms Prout is an experienced school principal and a National Leader of Education (NLE).
There are more than 1,100 NLEs in the UK, working alongside teaching schools and other system leaders to support schools in delivering educational excellence everywhere to help raise standards.
As Principal of Queen’s Park Academy in Bournemouth Ms Prout led the school from special measures to outstanding in Ofsted judgements.
As the current Director of Primary Education at Ambitions Academies Trust (AAT), her support of Tregonwell Academy in Bournemouth and Longspee Academy in Poole have contributed to both receiving outstanding Ofsted inspections.
Opened in September 2013, Parkfield School is directly funded by central government and independent of local authority control.
Covering children of primary and secondary ages and aimed at providing quality alternative education, the school is currently located at Dorset House in Christchurch Road, Bournemouth.
Parkfield School is due to relocate next year to a permanent site being redeveloped next to Bournemouth Airport, Hurn.
Ms Prout will host a parents’ information evening on Thursday, September 15.
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Its ethos is to nurture, inspire and enable.