Bloxham Church of England Primary School has appointed Lisa Horton to be its new headteacher to start from September 2021.
Matthew Ingall, who has been with the school since 2003, said: “It has been my privilege to be headteacher here all these years, and together with the staff and governors I am delighted to welcome Miss Horton to our lovely school.”
Mr Ingall was due to retire last year but, when recruitment was hampered by Covid-19 restrictions, he offered to stay for an additional year to help the school through the crisis.
He added: “I remember saying when I announced my retirement that I had worked through some biblical experiences at the school including a fire in 2005, and a flood in 2007. Who would have thought that a plague-like experience, in the form of Covid, would actually be next.
“In fact Covid has brought out once again the best qualities of our school, and I’d like to take this opportunity to praise and thank the staff and students for their remarkable resilience and hard work through this difficult time. It highlights just what a special place Bloxham is, and I know that with Miss Horton joining I am handing over to someone who will be able to continue bringing out the best in everyone.”
Bloxham Primary School is one of the largest village primary schools in Oxfordshire with 420 pupils, including a thriving foundation stage for youngsters from age four.
It is unusual in several respects: being independent of a Multi Academy Trust (MAT), having its own extensive grounds with sports playing fields, having a nurture centre employing a higher level nurture assistant (which is a case study of best practice across the county) and having built a highly regarded music department.
Miss Horton qualified with a B.Ed. from Bath University and began her teaching career at Glory Farm School in Bicester. She has extensive experience in many aspects of education, whihc include serving as a headteacher at Launton School, also in Bicester; as lead advisor for vulnerable children for Oxfordshire County Council, and as an executive head and consultant head for the Oxford Diocesan Schools Trust (ODST).
Miss Horton said: “I am so thrilled to be joining Bloxham Primary School. It’s a real gem in the county and I want to do my utmost to preserve those qualities and see it continue to sparkle.
"There are so many things at Bloxham that are important to me personally, such as being able to learn and play outside, to play and enjoy music, and of course a nurturing and enriching environment where the children feel happy and safe in their learning. I can’t wait to get started.”