Introduction From Our New Principal

Matthew Little, Darwen Vale High School Principal

Dear Parents and carers

I am delighted to be able to write to you as the new Principal of Darwen Vale High School.

I am joining Darwen Vale as the new Principal, having spent the last two years working as the Vice Principal (curriculum and standards) at South Shore Academy in Blackpool. Previous to that I worked at Kearsley Academy in South Bolton as Vice Principal for several years and before that Harrop Fold High school in Salford.

I have lived and worked in the North West of England all my life, having been born in the Salford area. My interests include travel, reading and sport. I still play amateur football, although in recent years have had to accept the inevitable move into a veteran’s league. I am a Manchester United fan but can at least claim that Old Trafford was the closest football ground to where I was born, lived and went to school. I am passionate about teaching and the importance of my subject, history, and intend to teach at least one history group in the academic year 2017/18. Above all, as a father of three children I share with you high ambitions for what our young people should strive to achieve.

It is clear to me that Vale has the potential to be a truly outstanding school. When interviewed, I was excited by the emphasis on high aspirations for students, the development of entrepreneurial qualities and the spectacular building with its first-class facilities. This impression has been confirmed to me in recent weeks through my dealings with all stakeholders; a body of staff who are passionate and committed to securing the best outcomes for our young people; students who are fantastic ambassadors for their local community and parents who are committed to and engaged with the education of their children.

My vision for the school is to ensure that all students achieve both academically and socially beyond personal expectations and prior attainment, that they experience an outstanding and enjoyable education and are able to sustain the life of their choice whilst making a positive contribution to their communities.

We can achieve this ambitious vision through addressing three key areas; firstly improving outcomes for all young people; secondly maintaining a relentless focus on improving the quality of teaching and learning; and finally by developing high standards of behaviour, life skills and an entrepreneurial spirit in all our students that will equip them for their future after leaving Darwen Vale.

I plan to hold regular parent forum meetings, and I would like to invite all parents into Darwen Vale on Tuesday 13th June between 5pm and 7pm to the first of these, the purpose being to meet with myself and members of my leadership team. I will outline some of our improvement strategy in more detail and parents will have the opportunity to ask questions in an open forum or in a more relaxed setting with refreshments

I look forward to meeting you all and getting to know each of our students over the coming weeks.

Yours sincerely

Matthew Little