Reepham principal gets top award

A Norfolk principal who has steered his school through three successive outstanding Ofsted assessments has won a prestigious award.

Chris Hassell, of Reepham High School, was given with the Ted Wragg Award for Lifetime Achievement in the 2011 Pearson Teaching Awards for the East of England.

It comes just as he is about to retire at the end of this school year.

The principal, who has helped exam results at the school rise from 43pc of pupils receiving five GCSE passes to 83pc, was presented with the accolade during a surprise assembly.

He told staff and children: 'I am overwhelmed by all the kind and generous things that have been said about me.

'However, the truth is that this award is really made to Reepham High School and College which has been one of the country's outstanding schools for over a decade due to the hard work and very special relationships that exist between all those who work in and are associated with the school and college. On your behalf I am very proud to accept this award.'

The Pearson Teaching Awards recognise the stars of the education world. The East of England winners will go forward to the national awards ceremony on October 30 where they will compete against champions from the rest of England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.

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When Mr Hassell joined Reepham High it was a 'good' school with fewer than 600 pupils aged 11 to 16. Now an over-subscribed school and colege with more than 1,000 students aged 11 to 18, it has had three outstanding ratings from Ofsted inspectors, gaining outstanding grades in all 21 categories in its last assessment.

President of the Pearson Teaching Awards Emma Thompson said: 'I owe so much of what I've done to my fantastic teachers at school and university and it is exciting to join in celebrating what is probably the most important profession of them all.'

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