Headteacher of Eaton Primary School suspended as investigation into “management issues” gets underway

Steve Portas, who has been suspended as headteacher at Eaton Primary. Steve Portas, who has been suspended as headteacher at Eaton Primary.

Friday, January 31, 2014
5:41 PM

The headteacher of a primary school which was put into special measures after a damning Ofsted report has been suspended.

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The governors of Eaton Primary School in Norwich said they suspended Steve Portas while an investigation takes place into “management issues”.

Parents were told the news in a letter sent home with pupils today.

No further details were released about the nature of the issues under investigation, or how long the investigation was expected to take.

In a statement, Malcolm Lysons, chair of governors at the 380-pupil school, said: “I can confirm that Steve Portas, head teacher of Eaton Primary School, has been suspended pending an investigation into management issues.

“The suspension is to ensure a full and fair investigation can take place in the interests of Mr Portas and the school.

“I am working closely with the local authority to ensure the availability of any additional support the school may need in order that the school itself continues to run normally.

“I am working closely with the officers of the county council to ensure we follow all of the correct procedures. However, as this matter is on-going, I am not in a position to comment further at this time.”

The council moved to reassure parents that an experienced headteacher will be at the school on Monday.

The school has been in special measures since an Ofsted report published in December downgraded it from “satisfactory”, when inspected in March 2012, to “inadequate”.

In a letter to parents in December, Mr Portas said he, staff and governors were “deeply disappointed” by the judgment, but said they viewed the outcome as a “catalyst for root and branch change”.

The inspectors had said almost one third of parents would not recommend the school to other parents, although many others were positive and “praised the care and attention their children received”.

The inspectors wrote: “Current school assessment data show that pupils’ underachievement is set to continue. With few exceptions, pupils across the school are working at only average levels for their age in reading, writing and mathematics. This is simply not good enough for these children.”

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10 comments

  • I am sure NCC has a department of school cosmetics dedicated to disguising educational warts as beauty spots. Of course this process is expensive as namaste alludes to. Come on EDP expose at least one wart before all schools become academies and free schools, and then the warts really will be invisible. 'Management issues' does not cut the mustard somehow.

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    Rhombus

    Saturday, February 1, 2014

  • see mumsnet for loads of gossip from SAHM and NIMBYs with nothing better to do and no real knowledge on anything

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    User Removed

    Friday, January 31, 2014

  • Here's how things will now play out... the LEA will breeze in, hand in glove with the DfE insisting that the school will become an Academy and tell the Governors that they either hop to their tune or they will be disbanded and an IWB will be put in instead. The Governors will cling on for dear life while the LEA devolve finance and premises and the final straw will be an axeman from Lord Nash's office who will roll over everyone in an effort to make it a done deal. If they have any sense, the Governors might as well stick two fingers up to the LEA and step down now while they have any pride left.

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    User Removed

    Friday, January 31, 2014

  • Wow yes Moosey I think mumsnet dies have a lot of stay at home mums etc but it seems rather random to link to here! One might even think you have nothing better to do but hang around mumsnet and EDP!

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    alicebrewer

    Friday, January 31, 2014

  • How right you are Frodo HT of Stalham High managed the 'Lambeth Walk' following three 'independant investigations' with a staff member suspended on full pay for 30 months followed by a 'gagging' settlement. I suggest this one alone cost the Public purse a six figure sum !!! The system is letting our children down

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    namaste

    Saturday, February 1, 2014

  • What a pity he missed out on the "Lambeth Walk"....and just might end up on "The Walk of Shame" instead.

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    Rhombus

    Friday, January 31, 2014

  • Rather random comment there moosey? Care to elaborate. As a parent with children at Eaton primary I have nothing but praise for the teachers. Let's hope the county council can get their act together and inform parents what s going on. Especially who this experienced head teacher is...that was not mentioned in the letter we got from the school today... But hey they told us through the EDP...at least thats something...as ever communication from Norfolk county council is not their strong point.

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    Sarah Pearson

    Friday, January 31, 2014

  • Yes I am slightly confused by the letter from governors, I know of one govenor but a letter from school said the governing body had been dissolved and county council would be taking over. There is a real shortage of information re the future of the school and academy status, it would be helpful if the county council kept parents informed rather than reply on an EDP article to do so.

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    Sarah Pearson

    Saturday, February 1, 2014

  • The governors of the school were disbanded shortly after the last Ofsted. That's what made the latest letter from 'the governors' rather confusing. It's nice the council have used the press to let the parents know what is going on though, isn't it?!

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    alicebrewer

    Saturday, February 1, 2014

  • Twitter seems to be complaining the first they heard about it was in the newspapers, but the report says letters went to the school before the article went online. So who is right?

    Report this comment

    Double Bill

    Saturday, February 1, 2014

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