Norfolk education head is made a Dame at Buckingham Palace

Dame Rachel de Souza is made a Dame of the British Empire by the Princess Royal at an Investiture ce

Dame Rachel de Souza is made a Dame of the British Empire by the Princess Royal at an Investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace. - Credit: PA Wire/Press Association Images

Former Ormiston Victory Academy executive principal Rachel de Souza has received her damehood in an investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace.

It was announced in the New Year's Honours List that she would be made a DBE for services to education and today the honour was conferred on her by The Princess Royal.

Dame de Souza was in charge at the Costessey secondary school for three years and led to it to an outstanding Ofsted judgment.

She is now chief executive of the Inspiration Trust, a federation of seven schools across Norfolk.

She said: 'Seeing the delighted faces of our Inspiration Trust students opening their excellent exam results or the letter giving them a place at a top university is sufficient reward for me.


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'However, being invited to Buckingham Palace to receive a Damehood is the experience of a lifetime.

'I am so thrilled that our hard work and commitment to raising education standards in our great county has been recognised. I will not rest now until Norfolk becomes the Education County.'

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