Plaistow headteacher recognised by university

Paul Harris headteacher at Curwen Primary School (picture: Birmingham City University)

Paul Harris headteacher at Curwen Primary School (picture: Birmingham City University) - Credit: Archant

With so many young people able to go to university these days it is sometimes argued that studying for degree is a waste of time and you can learn the same skills at “the university of life”.

However, for one headteacher in Plaistow, university played a vital role in preparing him for the challenges of working in a primary school.

Paul Harris, head of Curwen Primary and Nursery School, has been recognised by Birmingham City University as one of its Alumni of the Year for turning around the fortunes of Curwen.

Paul graduated in 1998 with a BA in primary education and became headteacher at Curwen in 2006.

After three years under his leadership the school was rated “outstanding” by Ofsted.

“I am honoured to be named as an alumnus of the year, particularly as it is for doing a job that I love – most of the time!

“This award also means a huge amount to me as it recognises how much the university ensured that I was equipped to become a very successful teacher and leader in education.

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“The teaching practice and teaching skills that I gained on the course I still use today.

“But what I also took from the course was the sense of a learning community, working together and having the support of colleagues, which is still very important to me now.”

Despite the accolades Paul, who also won the TES headteacher of the year award in 2015, is more motivated by helping children develop.

“The most rewarding aspect of my job is seeing the success of our children and their development.

“I really enjoy the challenge and the fact that every day is different,” said Paul.