Headteacher pledges to improve South Shields school

Mortimer Community College headteacher Simon Hignett, left, and chair of governors Stephen Coldwell.
Mortimer Community College headteacher Simon Hignett, left, and chair of governors Stephen Coldwell.

The new man at the head of a South Tyneside school which has been rated as ‘requiring improvement’ says he is determined to see it become an ‘outstanding’ place for pupils to learn.

Simon Hignett took over the role of headteacher of Mortimer Community College in Reading Road, South Shields in January.

Mortimer Community College headteacher Simon Hignett.

Mortimer Community College headteacher Simon Hignett.

He began to implement changes - including teachers opening more lines of communication with parents and students having it made clear to them what was expected.

Fourteen weeks into the job, Ofsted inspectors visited the school and rated it as ‘requiring improvement’

The report did, however, praise which had already been done and the direction Mr Hignett was taking the school.

The report said the school is “in a strong position to secure further improvement.”

This - says Mr Hignett and the board of governors, led by chairman Stephen Coldwell, is what they aim to build on.

Mr Hignett said: “I would encourage everyone to read the report as there are a lot of positives in it.

“Staff are embracing the changes we are implementing. We have got high expectations and I am not going to apologise for that. When I first arrived I think people thought I was really strict but what I am is fair.

“There is a set of acceptable standards and students know this. There are also consequences for those who don’t behave.

“This is a good school. It just needs direction to make it exceptional.”

Mr Hignett added with the support of the governors they are keen to move the school forward and create an “outstanding” school for pupils.

Mr Coldwell said: “Simon has already, he has made a lot of small changes which have made a vastly positive impact.

“We have got a common goal in that we want this to be the best school for our children.”

The report can be found by visiting mortimercommunitycollege.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Mortimer-Community-College-May-2017-Ofsted-Report.pdf