Headteacher Whitstone, Shepton Mallet, Somerset

Job description

The governors of Whitstone School are seeking to appoint an energetic, inspirational leader to build on the successes of the current headteacher and lead this happy, successful 11-16 school in the next stage of its development.
Whitstone School is a small stand-alone academy set in a beautiful semi-rural location at the heart of the thriving market town of Shepton Mallet. The school has a talented, dedicated staff, lovely students and very good facilities.

Whitstone School
The school gained Foundation Status in 2008 and became a stand-alone academy in 2011. It was judged good by Ofsted in 2013 and again in 2017.

We work closely with our local primary schools through the CLP (community learning partnership) and with other local secondary schools, particularly as part of an innovative and forward-thinking ‘5 Schools’ Group’ consisting of Whitstone School, Crispin School, Ansford Academy, Wells Blue and Stanchester Academy.
Our school site is excellent with plenty of outside space, playing fields, trees and views of the surrounding countryside. We also have our own Leisure Centre and recently replaced national standard Astroturf pitch, and the school’s internal environment is also attractive and well-resourced.

Our Students
High Expectations, Manners and Pride: these three core principles underpin everyday life at Whitstone School. Our students thrive in a friendly, purposeful environment, which helps them develop into well-rounded, mature young people. At all stages they are supported and guided to ensure they are more than ready to face the challenges of adult life.

We have four houses – Blackdown, Mendip, Polden and Quantock. Competition between the Houses is fierce and good work, positive attitudes, effort, helpfulness are all rewarded with House Points and the much coveted ‘Excellent Student’ awards. Achievement is celebrated and effort is rewarded, and our students take pride in their work and school.

As we are a small secondary school, our staff know our students really well. The sense of community and family is enhanced by our vertical tutor system and both teachers and support staff are expected to be tutors, which ensures tutor groups are small.
Despite the size of the school, there is a good range of extra-curricular activities and opportunities on offer, including good take-up of the Duke of Edinburgh scheme in Year 10.

Our Staff
The school has done well to attract highly qualified and committed staff into all roles, which ensures students are well-taught and well-supported. Our teachers and support staff work as a team to ensure the best educational opportunities for our students and there is an extremely high level of professionalism and mutual respect amongst staff.

The vast majority of lessons are taught by subject specialists and most teachers benefit from having their own classroom.
As many teachers work in departments of one or two staff, subjects have been grouped into six faculties: Maths, English, Science, World Studies (History, Geography, RE and Modern Foreign Languages), Information and Design Technology (ICT, Art and D&T) and Health & Performance (Dance, Drama, Music, PE and Health & Social Care). There are also four House Leaders.

The Senior Leadership Team consists of the Headteacher, two Deputy Headteachers, one Assistant Headteacher and the Business Manager. The Head of Maths is also currently seconded onto SLT as part of our professional development programme.

Our Community and Leisure Centre
The school serves the market town of Shepton Mallet and its surrounding area.

Shepton Mallet is a friendly market town with a strong sense of community. It is situated on the southern edge of the Mendips with glorious countryside all around. The town centre is actively reviving with independent businesses, including vintage shops and coffee shops, and a thriving market. There are enthusiastic volunteer groups supporting a range of inclusive activities. The town is set to expand with further new housing and the regeneration and development of the former prison.

The school is proud of its place in the community, particularly through Shepton Mallet Leisure Centre which we own, manage and run. The Leisure Centre is part of the school campus and is used by our students, however it is also a thriving community facility.

The school took over the Leisure Centre in April 2016 and has undertaken to develop and improve it beyond recognition. Investment in the ATP, gym equipment and the appearance of the building is paying off and membership is buoyant and growing. We are attracting external funding with ambitious growth plans to better serve the school and community.

Essential educational requirements

Please see the school website for more details: www.whitstoneschool.org

Essential qualifications

Please see the school website for more details: www.whitstoneschool.org

Essential skills and experience

Please see the school website for more details: www.whitstoneschool.org

Employee benefits

Please see the school website for more details: www.whitstoneschool.org

About Whitstone

At Whitstone School we are proud of the education we provide. We are an inclusive school with a strong sense of community and are striving to create an emotionally healthy environment for both students and staff. This is an exciting time for us; over the past few years the school has improved significantly. It was confirmed by Ofsted that the school continues to be Good when we were last inspected in February 2017. I enclose a copy of the report. We are committed to raising standards even further; Whitstone is a brilliant school which deserves external recognition. Our students are keen to achieve and have excellent attitudes to learning. Engaging and effective teaching, academic rigour and high quality care and support ensure our students are happy, well-mannered and proud to be students here. Standards are high; behaviour is good and we insist on good manners We are a small school, so staff know the students well and average class sizes are small, averaging 25. Students leave us prepared for their futures, whatever their aspirations. Individual talents are developed both in and out of the classroom and we offer a wide range of extra-curricular activities and trips. We have excellent facilities, including our on-site newly refurbished Leisure Centre and new Astroturf pitch. We are committed to staff well-being and free gym membership at our Leisure Centre is available to staff.

Charlton Road, Shepton Mallet, Somerset, BA4 5PF
Whitstone website (opens in a new window)