Suspended head teacher quits job

John Townsend

John Townsend

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A HEADTEACHER who was suspended from his £84,000-a-year post has resigned.

Governors from St George’s School in Marton announced John Townsend was stepping down from the top role in a letter to parents.

The note cited “significant personal circumstances” as the reason for his shock departure.

The Gazette revealed on Saturday how Mr Townsend, who only took the reins in September, had been suspended from the Cherry Tree Road school around three weeks ago.

Governors once again cited a personal matter as the reason for the suspension.

The Gazette understands it is not connected to any issues with pupils or as a result of any criminal proceedings against him.

Deacon Ann Wren, the school’s Chairman of Governors, said: “I have written to parents to inform them John Townsend has resigned due to a significant change in his personal circumstances.

“Mr Townsend has been an integral part of school life and its improvement since 2001 and he will be sorely missed.

“He aspires, in the future, to continue his career in education in some way and will be supported by Governors in doing so.”

Dan Berry, one of two deputy headteachers will stand in for Mr Townsend until a successor is appointed.

Governors are expected to meet in the coming week to set the recruitment process in motion.

Mr Townsend replaced long standing headteacher Elizabeth Warner who retired in July after more than 13 years at the helm.

The post when advertised last year had a pay scale between £84,000 and £92,400.

The physics teacher was deputy head before being given the top post and has been employed at the school for about 11 years.

When taking up post, Mr Townsend pledged to continue the school’s upward trend of exam success.

The school underwent a massive transformation in 13 years under Mrs Warner’s leadership. From being a school with dwindling pupil numbers and a poor reputation, it became a success story with rocketing exam results and glowing reports from Ofsted.