New Executive Principal explains her ambition for schools

Stamford Park Trust Board has announced the appointment of Melanie Wicks as Executive Principal (Secondary). 

She took up the new role on Monday.

Mel (pictured) joins the Trust to support Longdendale and Rayner Stephens High Schools in their improvement after both were rated ‘Inadequate’ by Ofsted last July. 

She will work alongside the headteachers at both schools and with Anton McGrath, CEO of Stamford Park Trust and principal of Ashton Sixth Form College, to drive change and improve outcomes for students.

Mel brings a wealth of experience of leading education across a number of schools as a headteacher and as a strategic school improvement professional.

Mel stated: “I’m extremely excited to join Stamford Park Trust and believe passionately in the values of the Trust. 

“I’m looking forward to working with both Longdendale and Rayner Stephens staff, students, parents and local communities. 

“I’m unashamedly ambitious for all our students. The ambition is to ensure that both secondary schools develop into centres of excellence and innovation, with a focus on creating opportunities for all students to thrive and make progress.”

Mel has more than 21 years’ experience in education. A science teacher by background, Mel has worked in a number of schools across Trafford as a middle and senior leader before rising to the position of headteacher at Wellacre Academy in 2013. Mel has worked with a number of schools across the North West as a leadership and development coach and as a school improvement adviser.

Anton McGrath said: “Mel is an outstanding leader of education with a proven track record of success. We were extremely impressed by her passion, expertise and commitment to student success and ambition at interview.

“She will be a fantastic addition to the Trust and I look forward to working with her to achieve our ambition for the high schools and the Trust overall.”

He added: “Mel joins the Trust at an important point in its development and will play a key role in helping to raise aspirations and improve outcomes for all students choosing to study with us at both Longdendale and Rayner Stephens High Schools. 

“It also demonstrates the ambition of the Trust to make a difference in our students’ lives.”

Longdendale and Rayner Stephens High School became the first secondary schools to join the trust earlier this year, the Trust having originally been set up by Ashton Sixth Form College in February 2019.

Last year, when the schools were still part of Aspire Plus Educational Trust, they received an inadequate grade from Ofsted. 

Ashton Sixth Form College is already rated as ‘outstanding.’


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