Shoreham head teacher leaves school on a high

Rebecca Jackson launching Holmbush Primary Academy in 2015. Picture: Liz Pearce LP1501226
Rebecca Jackson launching Holmbush Primary Academy in 2015. Picture: Liz Pearce LP1501226

Holmbush Primary Academy head teacher Rebecca Jackson has left the school on a high after 11 years at the top.

She has seen the school, Hawkins Crescent, Shoreham, through age of transfer changes and into becoming an academy.

Mrs Jackson started in April 2007, when it was Holmbush First School, and left on Friday, when the school broke up for summer. The Adur age of transfer changes were introduced in 2008, so she led the school to become a primary school over the following four years.

Mrs Jackson said: “The school has seen major changes, including several building projects which have improved provision at the school, providing well-resourced classrooms and a space for extra curricular activities.

“A really effective PTFA was formed, which has raised thousands of pounds for the school, buying amazing outside equipment for the children at break times as well as filling the library and providing innovative IT equipment for the computing curriculum.”

The school has developed Forest and Beach schools and Mrs Jackson has introduced a creative and exciting curriculum alongside vice principal Susan Stickley, who takes over as acting principal.

Holmbush Primary was previously only satisfactory but has now been graded good by Ofsted during two inspections.

The last Ofsted report in January stated: “The principal provides effective leadership. Staff share her determination to make sure that pupils achieve as well as they can.”

Mrs Jackson said: “This year’s key stage two test results were some of the best in the school’s history, above the national data in reading, maths and grammar, spelling and punctuation.

“I was really proud of the hard work put in by this year’s year-six children and the staff.”

Staff, parents and children celebrated Ms Jackson’s time at the school with a flamingo-inspired tea party last Monday and a leaving assembly on Friday.

The flamingo theme at Holmbush is part of its inclusive growth mindset ethos, inspiring children to be ‘have a go flamingos’.

Mrs Jackson said: “With a focus on effort and perseverance, the ethos has transformed the school and this is reflected in academic and sporting achievements.

“I am terribly sad to be leaving Holmbush after an incredible journey at the school. It has been challenging at times, particularly over the last three years, and unfortunately continuing cuts to the education budget mean that experienced staff such as myself are a financial burden to the schools they serve.

“I feel immensely proud of what we as a staff team and school community have achieved over the recent years and I know I’m leaving the school in a really good place.

“Susan Stickley, the vice principal, and the staff and parents planned a fantastic send off for me and I had a lovely week. It was great to leave on such a high, we had a really good Ofsted this year and our statutory results across the school are in line with or above national data.”

In October, Mrs Jackson will be walking 85km across the Himalayas in five days for St Barnabas House hospice. Visit www.justgiving.com/Rebecca-India4StB to make a donation or text RTSB99 £3 to 70070.

-----

Head teacher inspires pupils by taking on trek challenge

Balloons released to celebrate new academy

’Fantastic acts’ dazzle at Shoreham’s Beach Dreams festival