Students at Berwick Academy have played an important part in the appointment of their new deputy head, who will join the school after Easter.
A panel of pupils drawn from the school council asked candidates questions as part of the interview process.
Successful applicant Steve Wilkes, currently assistant headteacher for teaching and learning at Sacred Heart Catholic School in Newcastle, will begin at the school in May.
He was selected from a strong field of 12 candidates after a two-day interview process involving governors, staff and students. Headteacher Alexis Widdowson said: “I am delighted to announce the appointment of Steve Wilkes as deputy headteacher of Berwick Academy.
“His warm personality, collegiate management style and passion for learning quickly established him as a strong contender, but it was ultimately his shared sense of commitment to the development of an outstanding school for the children of Berwick which resonated with the interview panel.”
Students drawn from the school council formulated questions they wished to ask and acting as a panel they asked the candidates their questions. One of the governors attended the session as an observer and feedback from the session was used when the final decision was made. Colin Frame, chair of governors, explained: “As a school we value the opinions of our pupils and how senior members of the leadership team interact with students is important if they are to be effective in their roles.
“The students’ part was by no means the only factor taken into account, but they did play an important part in the process along with staff and governors.”
Mr Frame added: “Steve came through the rigorous recruitment process and impressed the interview panel with his knowledge, enthusiasm and his strong desire to join Berwick Academy on its journey to become an outstanding school.
“He is a welcome addition to Berwick Academy and was the unanimous choice of the selection panel.”