New Tow­ers head count­ing on team ef­fort for suc­cess

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Shedding The Pounds - By Sa­man­tha Wil­liams

saw­illiams@thek­m­ Stu­dent achieve­ment and be­hav­iour will be the main fo­cus at the Tow­ers School and Sixth Form Cen­tre in Ash­ford, says the new head teacher.

Richard Billings started at the Faver­sham Road school as prin­ci­pal this term, which started on Tues­day, fol­low­ing the re­tire­ment of the pre­vi­ous head­teacher, Gra­ham Ralph.

First on the for­mer maths teacher’s list for his new role was to in­tro­duce four core pur­poses he wants staff and stu­dents to fol­low. There are: vi­sion, ex­pec­ta­tion, achieve­ment and care.

He has also ap­pointed five col­leagues, Justin Davey, David Led­ding­ton, Rob Gay­gan, Chris Brett and Tara McVey, to join a se­nior lead­er­ship team.

He said: “For me, it is a team ap­proach. I have cho­sen my lead­er­ship team very care­fully and placed them in roles I know they’ll ex­cel in.

“The school needs to fo­cus on mov­ing for­ward to pro­vide world class ed­u­ca­tion to the Ash­ford com­mu­nity. We have high ex­pec­ta­tions of stu­dents’ be­hav­iour and achieve­ment.”

Be­fore term started, all mem­bers of staff gath­ered at the Ash­ford In­ter­na­tional Ho­tel to launch the new core prin­ci­ples. New signs have also been in­stalled which in­clude the school’s new slo­gan, Ex­cel­lence in Ev­ery­thing.

Mr Billings, 47, from Whit­stable, said: “We’re go­ing to have a strong fo­cus on lit­er­acy and nu­mer­acy but ex­cel­lence in ev­ery­thing must be re­in­forced.”

He added that there will be no changes to the ex­ist­ing school uni­form and PE kits, which were in­tro­duced in Septem­ber.

Mr Billings started his ca­reer as a maths teacher 17 years ago af­ter de­cid­ing to leave his role as a for­eign ex­change dealer in the city.

He said: “I wanted to show pas­sion and give some­thing back to the com­mu­nity.” He worked his way up from teacher, to head of depart­ment, to vice prin­ci­pal, work­ing at schools in Can­ter­bury, West­gate and Broad­stairs, be­fore sign­ing up to be­come the new head at Tow­ers.

He added: “I am very proud to take on this po­si­tion. I want to make ev­ery­one count, from stu­dents to staff, par­ents and gover­nors. We’re on this jour­ney to­gether - let’s start now.”

An open evening will be held for the Sixth Form Cen­tre on Thurs­day, Jan­uary 16, from 5pm at the Ken­ning­ton School, where new cour­ses will be an­nounced.

Pic­ture: Tony Flash­man FM2975819

New head teacher Richard Billings, third left, with, from left, se­nior lead­er­ship team Tara McVey, Chris Brett, Justin Davey, Rob Gay­gan and David Led­ding­ton

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