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Dual School HT

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by thejudgesscoresarein, Feb 18, 2019.

  1. thejudgesscoresarein

    thejudgesscoresarein Occasional commenter

    Just a query that i’d like some advice on, especially as I don’t have experience as such of the above.

    I have been approached today by the chair of our local school partnership to ask me to become acting Headteacher of a local catholic primary school whilst continuing in my current role as HT, so i’d be sharing my time between both schools.
    The HT in the neighbouring school (who I know very well) has had to take early retirement due to illness and has been signed off until the end of the notice period.
    I’ve had a conversation with the CoG and they have advertised the role, but want me to oversee the leadership of the school 3 days a week, supporting the Deputy Headteacher who has only been in place since September, so isn’t that experienced of the long responsibility for whole school leadership on a full time basis. They plan to have a new HT appointed for September 2019.

    For me, at my current school, my Deputy Headteacher has been in their role for 5 years and I’m ‘preparing’ them for headship so that they are ready to step up in the near future so this is a perfect opportunity to show their capabilities. I’m confident in their ability, but I just wanted to know if anyone else has managed two schools at the same time and how they coped with the workload?
  2. Sundaytrekker

    Sundaytrekker Star commenter

    Yes, many people do. You have to divide your time and delegate more than you would if there is just one school. You will be able to make use of the same paperwork etc across both schools but this is more difficult on a short term basis. Work on the same thing in support of both schools where you can. You can’t work double the hours you do now.

    Don’t be misled, though. You won’t be just supporting the deputy you will have all of the headship responsibilities in both schools including facing Ofsted if they arrive. Negotiate an increase in pay as it’s a more complex job. STPC document says different things for this if it’s temporary rather than permanent.
  3. thejudgesscoresarein

    thejudgesscoresarein Occasional commenter

    Thanks Sundaytrekker- your advice is appreciated.
    Half term this week so I’ve spent a couple of days in the school with the CoG to go through plans.
    I’m meeting with the AHT and DHT on Friday to ‘lay out’ the ground and let them know my expectations along with any concerns/ideas that they have.
    My plan is to spend Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at this school and then Tuesday and Friday at my normal school with the Deputy Headteacher’s of each school taking responsibility in my absence.
  4. nomad

    nomad Star commenter

    My advice would be to request that you spend Monday, Wednesday and Thursday morning at this school and then Tuesday and Friday at your normal school with the Deputy Headteacher of each school taking responsibility in your absence. Thursday afternoon? Working from home without distractions from either school.

    Just a thought.

    I would also suggest that you ask the boards of both schools to reconsider whether every FAN and committee meeting between now and September is vital or whether some can be cancelled.
    Sundaytrekker, Pomza and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  5. nomad

    nomad Star commenter

    Read "FGB and committee meeting"
    Sundaytrekker likes this.
  6. thejudgesscoresarein

    thejudgesscoresarein Occasional commenter

    Thanks nomad for your advice, it does seem like a good way of working to be honest, especially the Thursday afternoon working from home!
    This arrangement of me managing two schools should only be the case until July anyway, as the CoG is ambitious to get a new Headteacher in place for September.

    My DHT at my permanent school has expressed interest in the role and they’re submitting their application next week for the role. If they are successful at getting the job, I will speak to the CoG and mention for my Deputy to start there earlier and then I’m back in my permanent school full time. It would make sense that way if I’m honest.
    nomad likes this.
  7. Jesmond12

    Jesmond12 Star commenter

    Have you spoken to your current CofG as this is their decision to make and not yours?

    I was approached by the LA and asked to become an Executive HT over two schools. However when the GB of my school discussed the request they rejected the proposal.
  8. thejudgesscoresarein

    thejudgesscoresarein Occasional commenter

    No I haven’t because my DHT has not yet applied for the role- when/if they are shortlisted for interview, I’ll mention it to my CoG then.
    The SLT at my permanent school consists of a HT, DHT and 2 x AHTs so there would be sufficient cover if my DHT does get the job and does move before September.

    Having the flexibility of 4 SLT members will give me the opportunity to recruit and have a strong DHT in place for September, but we will have to see what happens first!
  9. thejudgesscoresarein

    thejudgesscoresarein Occasional commenter

    First week managing the two schools seem to have gone well so far and I feel like I’m able to manage my time effectively.
    The DHT’s of both schools know my expectations and they’re equipped to step up in my absence.

    Furthermore, the DHT at my permanent school has applied for the HT role at this school and is being interviewed next week. Having spoken to the CoG, the role has been advertised for over a week now and they’ve only had 3 suitable applicants so far for the position including my Deputy.
  10. thejudgesscoresarein

    thejudgesscoresarein Occasional commenter

    The interviews for the HT job took place on Wednesday last week and my DHT was successful in getting the appointment as Headteacher. I’ve spoken to the CoG’s at both schools and it has been agreed that they will start in their new post after Easter enabling me to return to my permanent school after that.
    With the Deputy Head vacancy I now have in my school, I am advertising it internally to enable my Assistant Heads to apply for the role. Both are more than capable of performing at the capacity of Deputy Headteacher, I just need to conduct the recruitment process to ensure it is fair for all parties.
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  11. Sundaytrekker

    Sundaytrekker Star commenter

    Sounds as though it’s all gone to plan. It’s definitely a temporary arrangement then.
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  12. thejudgesscoresarein

    thejudgesscoresarein Occasional commenter

    Yeah! It’s all worked well to be honest. I’m glad to be back in my own school after Easter although I’ll be spending some more time in the school as I’m going to be mentoring the new Head in their role.

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