New Ark Academy head "confident" about Putney school's future
The new headteacher of Putney’s Ark Academy has said she is “looking forward, not back” after a turbulent year for the school.
Alison Downey, who was appointed principal in June, has set herself the target of taking the school’s achievements up to an outstanding Ofsted rating.
Although currently working out of temporary classrooms, the future for the school is bright, with an array of new facilities on the horizon.
The development of the new school, to be funded by the sale of luxury flats, was the subject of a long and bitter campaign by residents and former pupils of Elliott School, the previous occupants of the site.
Ms Downey said: “We are only focused on the children, and what they need to succeed, not the past.
“Personally, I am so glad we have kept the historical integrity of the site, but we are also adding new science labs, a drama studio, new art studios, food labs, computer facilities and a 250-seat theatre.
“The gym was crumbling so our main concern was the safety of the children.
“To reach outstanding, we need to focus on academic rigour and make sure the teaching is as good as it can be, and I am confident we can achieve this.
“We have to prioritise the children’s needs and have very high expectations.”
The academy was rated as good in all categories in its Ofsted inspection in March 2013.
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