Headteacher gagged from speaking about school success

Dr Rory Fox

Dr Rory Fox

First published in News by

THE Basildon Academies is now the second top performing school in town - but its headteacher has been gagged from speaking about it.

The secondary school, which is currently in special measures and teaches across two sites in Timberlog Close and Wickford Avenue in Pitsea, has just received a glowing monitoring report from Ofsted after the first one in March slammed the state of the school and the governing body for having a “flawed vision” and “no educational expertise”.

Headteacher Dr Rory Fox unexpectedly announced his resignation last month.

The report said: “As a result of the principal’s clear vision and strong leadership, inadequate teaching has been largely eliminated as a result of good teaching and professional development, or where teachers have proved unable to improve, robust action to remove them was taken.”

Dr Fox is believed to have resigned after a row with the school’s sponsor and governors when they wanted to increase the number of teaching hours at the school, which the headteacher disagreed with.

Dr Fox, who took over the troubled school in September 2011, told the Echo he was no longer allowed to speak to us but would not say why.

It is believed the sanction has been put in place by Les Livermore, the chairman of the governors, who has so far refused a face to face interview with the Echo.

Although the official GCSE figures are not available from Essex County Council until the new year - De La Salle School in Ghyllgrove, Basildon got the best GCSE results in the town with 53 per cent followed by the Basildon Academies which got 45 per cent A to C pass rate including English and maths.

Responding by email only, Mr Livermore said: “Governing bodies will be judged upon their results. In the summer of 2012 the Academy achieved a 45 per cent rate and with the exception of a faith school is now the top performing school in Basildon , having now overtaken the Woodlands and James Hornsby Schools.

"Stability in staffing is important and the loss of any good member of staff is always disappointing but the board of governors is realistic and fully accepts that senior leadership teams will evolve over time and it is incumbent that body to seek replacements who will work closely with the governing body to ensure that the impressive rises in attainment, attendance and behaviour are sustained and improved.”

Mr Livermore refused to comment on if he had put the sanction in place to prevent Dr Fox from speaking to the press and Martin Finegold, the school sponsor was not available for comment.

Comments (8)

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9:30am Wed 14 Nov 12

Olivia2847 says...

A disgrace! Noticed elsewhere how crucial focused education has to be an in some cases success stories! Here it would appear we have Dr Fox put under so much pressure as to resign - I had hope he had been headhunter! However, there are no expensive consultants in place, and the Governors who in the main have no hands on experience of educational management have adopted this top down attitude - stability my arse! Glad I don't teach no more .....
A disgrace! Noticed elsewhere how crucial focused education has to be an in some cases success stories! Here it would appear we have Dr Fox put under so much pressure as to resign - I had hope he had been headhunter! However, there are no expensive consultants in place, and the Governors who in the main have no hands on experience of educational management have adopted this top down attitude - stability my arse! Glad I don't teach no more ..... Olivia2847
  • Score: 3

10:30am Wed 14 Nov 12

Squirm says...

Fox clearly knows his worth and has achieved a lot in a short time. As usual the governors are meddling fools. If they really do know best how come the school was in such a state in the first place? Once power was shifted to governors I left teaching.
Fox is doing the right thing...you can't polish a t*rd
Fox clearly knows his worth and has achieved a lot in a short time. As usual the governors are meddling fools. If they really do know best how come the school was in such a state in the first place? Once power was shifted to governors I left teaching. Fox is doing the right thing...you can't polish a t*rd Squirm
  • Score: 2

10:57am Wed 14 Nov 12

Nebs says...

Mr Livermore said: “Governing bodies will be judged upon their results." So lets look at the results that we have been told. 45% passed at A - C. That means that 55% failed. National figures show that 69.4% of all GCSE exams were given at least a grade C. You got 45%. Judged upon your results, do you think you passed or failed?
Mr Livermore said: “Governing bodies will be judged upon their results." So lets look at the results that we have been told. 45% passed at A - C. That means that 55% failed. National figures show that 69.4% of all GCSE exams were given at least a grade C. You got 45%. Judged upon your results, do you think you passed or failed? Nebs
  • Score: 2

1:12pm Wed 14 Nov 12

Olivia2847 says...

Nebs wrote:
Mr Livermore said: “Governing bodies will be judged upon their results." So lets look at the results that we have been told. 45% passed at A - C. That means that 55% failed. National figures show that 69.4% of all GCSE exams were given at least a grade C. You got 45%. Judged upon your results, do you think you passed or failed?
Lies, dammed lies and statistics ....
[quote][p][bold]Nebs[/bold] wrote: Mr Livermore said: “Governing bodies will be judged upon their results." So lets look at the results that we have been told. 45% passed at A - C. That means that 55% failed. National figures show that 69.4% of all GCSE exams were given at least a grade C. You got 45%. Judged upon your results, do you think you passed or failed?[/p][/quote]Lies, dammed lies and statistics .... Olivia2847
  • Score: 1

2:18pm Thu 15 Nov 12

petela776 says...

Is it true that the headteacher has been sacked and 'escorted' from the building?
What is going on at this school??
Is it true that the headteacher has been sacked and 'escorted' from the building? What is going on at this school?? petela776
  • Score: 0

9:50pm Thu 15 Nov 12

G8tilly says...

Five principals, in less than 5 years. All resign with no job to go to. Speaks volume. If the head was escorted off the premises he know what's going on . No wonder he is gagged.

Shut the place and start again,
Five principals, in less than 5 years. All resign with no job to go to. Speaks volume. If the head was escorted off the premises he know what's going on . No wonder he is gagged. Shut the place and start again, G8tilly
  • Score: 0

5:47pm Fri 16 Nov 12

spectator says...

Get rid of the Chair of Governors, Les Livermore - the man's a menace. Just when the Academies were on the up with Rory Fox at the helm. As the mouthpiece of the sponsor,(American hedge fund manager, Martin Finegold), they should both go and the sooner the better. I feel sorry for the kids of East Basildon, they deserve better than these two fools. So much for Academies. Can't the Council take it back?
Get rid of the Chair of Governors, Les Livermore - the man's a menace. Just when the Academies were on the up with Rory Fox at the helm. As the mouthpiece of the sponsor,(American hedge fund manager, Martin Finegold), they should both go and the sooner the better. I feel sorry for the kids of East Basildon, they deserve better than these two fools. So much for Academies. Can't the Council take it back? spectator
  • Score: 0

9:25pm Wed 21 Nov 12

spectator says...

He hadn't been "escorted out" by half past three.........
He hadn't been "escorted out" by half past three......... spectator
  • Score: 0

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