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Sir Michael Wilshaw to leave Hackney’s Mossbourne Academy for top Ofsted job

17:25 18 October 2011

Sir Michael Wilshaw, Executive Headmaster of the Mossbourne Community Academy, for The Big Read.

Sir Michael Wilshaw, Executive Headmaster of the Mossbourne Community Academy, for The Big Read.

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The man hailed a “superhead” for his dramatic success at Mossbourne Community Academy will be stepping down from his role as executive principal of the school.

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Sir Michael Wilshaw, who has been head of Mossbourne since it opened in 2004, will be leaving at the end of this term after being appointed chief inspector of Ofsted.

Education secretary Michael Gove previously called Sir Michael “my hero”.

The Sunday Times claimed that he approached Sir Michael to offer him the £180,000 post – which reportedly pays less than his current job – because he is impressed with his traditional approach.

Eighty two per cent of pupils got five good GCSEs including English and maths this year.

“I feel very sad to be leaving,” Sir Michael told the Gazette.

“It has been a great joy for me to lead a school which has done so well. The children here, across all abilities, have done phenomenally.

“Mossbourne has been very good for Hackney, not just for the children who come here but for children as a whole. It has demonstrated that children in Hackney can do as well as - if not better than - anywhere else.”

Sir Michael, 65, was due to work on proposals for a new academy - dubbed “Mossbourne two” - which will be opened on the site of the soon-to-be relocated Cardinal Pole lower school, in Victoria Park Road.

But his role at both schools will now be advertised.

Acting principals Peter Hughes and Alice Painter will retain day-to-day management of Mossbourne until a new permanent principal is appointed in January.

But Sir Micheal vowed to return to Hackney in the future.

“Hopefully when my time at Ofsted is over I can come back and oversee both Mossbourne schools.”

Sylvie Pierce, chairwoman of governors, said: “The governors are hugely proud of Sir Michael and wish him every success in his new post.”

But not everyone was pleased with the move.

Maurice Marco, of De Beauvoir Road, who was hoping to send his children to the school, said he wondered whether the school’s impressive results would be sustained without the man with “the magic touch”.

Steve Belk, acting chief executive of The Learning Trust, which runs Hackney’s state schools but not academies, said: “It’s fantastic for our education community to see a Hackney headteacher take up such a high profile role and to see his experience and expertise recognised in this way.”

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