Wakefield headteacher at the heart of school’s success story nominated for national award

Clare Kelly is one of just eight headteachers nominated across the UK.
Clare Kelly is one of just eight headteachers nominated across the UK.

A Wakefield headteacher who has been described as being ‘at the heart’ of a school’s success story has been nominated for a national award.

Clare Kelly helped guide Dane Royd Junior and Infants in Hall Green to an ‘outstanding’ Ofsted report last year, but is also dedicated to helping other schools that are struggling.

Her work has not gone unnoticed and she is one of just eight across the UK to have been short listed by Tes (Times Education Supplement) for the headteacher of the year accolade.

Ian Patterson, chair of governors at Dane Royd, said: “Clare is at the heart of Dane Royd School.

“Being a headteacher is not her job, it is her passion and vocation.

“She is a fantastic leader who has surrounded herself with extraordinary staff.

“She embodies everything that is good and positive in the education system and in the world at large.

“Clare’s passion for educating goes beyond everyday teaching and leadership.

“She is an inspiration, not only to her staff and pupils, but to their families, and the wider community - locally, nationally and internationally.”

Ofsted inspectors praised Clare’s ‘exceptional’ leadership and the team she had put together during a 2018 visit, which led to the school being given an overall top mark.

Tes editor Ann Mroz said simply making it to the final list is a huge achievement for any headteacher, adding: “It is wonderful to see such great ideas and excellent practice emerging from our schools and teachers, especially at a time when schools are under financial pressure.

“We had a record number of entries this year and the standard was very high, so all those short listed should be very proud, it’s an extraordinary achievement to be on this shortlist.”

The winners will be revealed at an awards ceremony in London on Friday, June 21.