New Headteacher Announcement

Dear students, parents and carers,


I am very excited to be returning to Larkmead School to become Headteacher.


I began my teaching career as an English teacher, working in Cheltenham, Chipping Norton and at Gosford Hill school in Kidlington where I was Head of the English Faculty before joining Larkmead as Deputy Headteacher in September 2015.


As Deputy Headteacher my responsibilities included teaching & learning, curriculum organisation and development, data, the timetable and leading the Heads of Faculty group. I taught English, Media Studies and Business Studies at GCSE and A Level, as well as A Level Philosophy. I greatly enjoyed my time in the Larkmead community, working with wonderful students, great colleagues and supportive parents and governors


I became Headteacher at Fitzharrys in January 2011, where I was very fortunate to once again be working as part of a thriving, positive and inclusive community. Our students and staff talk about the Fitzharrys family, and I was struck by this strong sense of community during my two days on interview at Larkmead.


Working to the principles of Together Everyone Achieves More, I am proud to be part of a happy and successful school where children develop as individuals because of the ethos and opportunities they enjoy. I am proud that as a school community we have sustained a significant improvement in results, setting a new school record for the last six years, achieving and building on Good Ofsted status and substantially increasing student admissions.


I teach every child in Year 7, which helps me to know everyone in the school personally. This caring approach where every child is known, challenged and championed is at the heart of my ethos for school leadership, and I am delighted that these strengths and values run through Larkmead.


As well as Learning Skills in Year 7 I have taught GCSE English and English Literature at different points as a Headteacher. I love teaching and continue to read and research so that I can incorporate new ideas into my work in the classroom. I am a Founding Fellow of the Charted College of Teaching.


I really enjoy working in my local community and being part of education in Abingdon. I am an active member of the Abingdon Partnership Steering Group and have chaired the Abingdon Consortium for Education of the three secondary schools and Abingdon & Witney College. I am part of the Oxfordshire Secondary School Headteachers Association Steering Group. I represent OSSHTA on the Oxfordshire Autism Partnership Board as part of my commitment to inclusive education.


As a local resident, headteacher and parent of children who attended Larkmead I have a good understanding of the school and a real appreciation for all that the students and staff achieve. I look forward to starting my new role at Larkmead, bringing the experiences I have gained to support the school’s ethos of one community, individual minds, creating futures.


Best wishes

Jonathan Dennett