Oversubscribed Norfolk secondary school appoints new headteacher

Matthew Sprake who is taking over as principal at Broadland High Ormiston Academy in Hoveton. Pictur

Matthew Sprake who is taking over as principal at Broadland High Ormiston Academy in Hoveton. Picture: Ormiston Academies Trust - Credit: Ormiston Academies Trust

The running of an oversubscribed high school in the Broads is to be taken over by a new headteacher.

Broadland High School in Hoveton draws pupils from primaries including Coltishall, Horning and Rackh

Broadland High School in Hoveton draws pupils from primaries including Coltishall, Horning and Rackheath. Picture: Mark Bullimore

Matthew Sprake, who is currently deputy headteacher at the City of Norwich School (CNS), has been appointed the new principal of Broadland High Ormiston Academy in Hoveton.

However he will not take up the new role at the school, which has 728 pupils and is rated by Ofsted as good, until after the February half term.

MORE: High school seeks admission change to prioritise children of its staffHe will bring with him extensive local knowledge, having long lived and worked in the local area, including also previously teaching at Framingham Earl High School for seven years from 2003.

Former Broadland High School principal Aron Whiles.
Picture: Mark Bullimore

Former Broadland High School principal Aron Whiles. Picture: Mark Bullimore

In a decade at CNS, which is also sponsored by the Ormiston Academies Trust (OAT), he has held a range of senior leadership roles, and was an integral part of the team which achieved an ‘outstanding’ Ofsted rating in leadership and management.

He has also helped guide the continued success of CNS’ Sixth Form, during which a significantly increased number of students secured places at top universities.


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The appointment follows the departure of former principal Aron Whiles, who joined OAT as the regional director for the eastern region in the summer.

Pupils collecting their GCSE results at Broadland High School in August. Picture: Ormiston Academies

Pupils collecting their GCSE results at Broadland High School in August. Picture: Ormiston Academies Trust - Credit: Ormiston Academies Trust

Simon Laycock, who was appointed as acting principal from September will stay in post until February, helping to ensure a smooth transition for the school before returning to his substantive role as vice principal.

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Mr Sprake said: “Both Simon and formerly Aron have done a fantastic job with the school, and I am looking forward to working closely with staff, students and the wider school community as we look to continue to build on the academy’s already positive and successful journey.

“I strongly believe that all young people should have the opportunity to achieve their full potential, in turn creating a culture and ethos which fosters creativity, confidence and high aspirations.

MORE: ‘The pressure is immense’ - Headteachers feel strain of term dominated by Covid“In tandem with outstanding teaching and learning, I believe Broadland can continue to be a real beacon of excellence and an invaluable asset to the local community which we are proud to serve.”

Mr Whiles said: “The school holds a special place for me, and I am thrilled that it will have such an inspirational and high-calibre principal taking the reins.

“I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Simon Laycock for his outstanding work as Acting Principal.

“During an unprecedented back-to-school period, I am sure we can all agree that he has done a superb job in providing our students and staff with the best possible start to the academic year.”

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