Welcome to Cumberland Community School
As someone who was raised in Newham, I don’t need to tell you, the parents, the challenges we face in this corner of London. You know the importance of a well rounded, academically focused education for your children, and the impact it has on their future life chances.
I have left a school, less than three miles down the road where I taught as the Deputy Headteacher, which faces the same issues we face. The difference at my previous school is that the children are leaving with the confidence and belief that no matter their starting point, they can achieve and be successful.
This is not entirely down to the quality of education they receive. Yes, having top teachers leads to getting top grades which in turn leads to college and university and an exciting and fulfilling career.
But there is more to creating an outstanding school than results alone. A school should create a culture where students have high aspirations and high expectations for what they can achieve.
A culture where students believe they can compete at university and in the jobs market with those who went to elite private schools and where they do not fear this challenge but in fact, they relish it.
This is the type of school which has a life changing impact on the lives of the young people who pass through, and the communities they live in.
Young people who will be doctors, lawyers, politicians, engineers, journalists, writers. Young people who will shape the future of the country, and in this era of globalisation, the world.
I know from personal experience the impact of a school that has low expectations for its young people. Teachers who consign young people to the scrapheap based on what postcode they come from.
I come from a school where failure is not an option. This is the culture and mentality I will help to forge at this school. We cannot allow our young people to be failed, there is too much at stake. I will not allow it.