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Karen Hammond

Ravens Principal is Essex headteacher of the year

Karen Hammond, principal of Ravens Academy, achieves top award at Essex Teaching Awards

Posted by Stephanie Broad | February 17, 2016 | People, policy, politics

Academy Transformation Trust (ATT) has announced that Principal Karen Hammond has been chosen as Essex Primary Headteacher of the Year at the Essex Teaching Awards 2016.

Karen is currently Principal of Ravens Academy in Clacton-on-Sea. When ATT took on Ravens Academy and appointed Karen as Principal two years ago, it was in special measures and labelled as one of the worst schools in the country.

Under Karen’s leadership, the academy underwent a remarkable transformation and last year was rated ‘Good’ by Ofsted (the second highest rating) in four of the five categories and ‘Outstanding’, the highest rating possible, in the leadership category. 

Inspectors applauded the high quality of teaching and the strong focus on individual pupils’ needs as well as commending the outstanding leadership of the principal, vice principal, other senior leaders, the governing body and the trust.

Ravens Academy is now at the cutting-edge of education employing international staff and embracing the best curriculums throughout the world.

Karen was nominated for the award by Ravens Vice Principal, Andy Bear. Karen has been working in education for 35 years and was previously Headteacher at Jubilee Academy Mossley in Walsall, West Midlands.

Karen Hammond said of her accomplishment: “I am so honoured to have received this award.

“It is incredibly rewarding to have been recognised in this way, but it is not just about me.

“I am incredibly grateful to the trust for their belief in me and to my colleagues for their hard work and dedication.

“Thank you as well to the pupils and their families for working together with us on our journey. And to my family, I am incredibly grateful for your support, I could not have done it without you.” 

Ian Cleland, CEO of Academy Transformation Trust, praised Karen’s achievement:  “We have always known that Karen was an outstanding principal and we were delighted when she offered to become principal of Ravens Academy having achieved so much as the principal of Jubliee Academy Mossley.

“Even we, who know her so well, were amazed by the rapid impact that she had on both Ravens Academy and the community that it serves. 

“Her nomination and now achievement as Headteacher of the year in Essex recognised the outstanding job that she has done and is doing at Ravens Academy.

“Her case study of this success prepared for the DfE had, for me, a key message which underpins all of the huge achievements at Ravens, to quote Karen – ‘you’ve got to love your children’.

“She demonstrates this every day.

“I am really proud to have Karen as one of our principals and wish her well as she moves forward to the national awards.”



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