Tuesday, 13 September 2011

St John Baptist de La Salle - please come to the aid of the Vaughan

And, indeed, please also come to the aid of His Grace, Archbishop Nichols and help him to successfully oversee the appointment of a new headteacher for The Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School.

St John Baptist de La Salle is generally regarded as the main patron of teachers and this coming Thursday, 15th September, the Vaughan Parents and their supporters will gather in the Piazza outside Westminster Cathedral at 7pm for a Vigil of Prayer.

The 'Father of Modern Education'
The last couple of years have not been happy ones for the Vaughan, or, for that matter, Westminster Diocese although the issues that have arisen have been a result of the Diocese riding roughshod over the wishes and the rights of parents and Governors of the school. Much of that will now change thanks to intervention from the House of Lords but......the issue hanging over the school now is to appoint a new headteacher. Someone who can ably resume the role played by Michael Gormally, the recently retired head.

It is not easy recruiting headteachers. It is even harder to find a good one. Heads these days have to both know the teaching elements back to front as well as manage people (staff, pupils, parents - and Archbishops) and manage what is, in effect, a major multi-faceted organisation.

The new Head will need to be able to assume the role without interference from the Diocese - I have no doubt that there will be interference but his/her role is to manage the school on behalf of the Board, staff and parents; and it is the Head who must have the freedom to act on their own initiative and take risks - a successful school is also a risk taking business. It cannot be successful if the Head is constantly looking over his/her shoulder to see if the Nazguls of the Diocesan Education Department are on the march.

I hope that the Diocesan authorities will realise that a strong headteacher will be both good for the school and good for the Archbishop.

The advertisment for the new head appears on 16th September so, if you are free,
join the Vaughan Parents on the 15th at 7pm - Westminster Cathedral Piazza.

And if you can't make it in person, then please light a candle for a successful appointment.

1 comment:

  1. We will pray for the appointment of a Head who will be committed to preserving the cherished and unambigously Catholic ethos of the Vaughan.
    We hope also that Mr Paul Barber , Director of Education in the Westminster Diocese, will realise his self appoinment has brought nothing but disharmony to the Vaughan. We hope he will work instead to improve undersubscribed Catholic schools in Westminster.