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Hunt on for principal to run new Norwich free school

PUBLISHED: 11:20 08 October 2012

Rachel de Souza, principal of Ormiston Victory Academy.

Rachel de Souza, principal of Ormiston Victory Academy.

Archant © 2010; 01603 772434

The search has begun to find a principal capable of inspiring a new generation of mathematicians and scientists at a free school in Norwich.

The Sir Isaac Newton Free School is set to open in September 2013 for sixth form students focused on the two disciplines.

The team behind it has now begun the process of recruiting a principal to lead the school.

Rachel de Souza, pictured, who is spearheading plans for the free school alongside Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital chairman David Prior, said they had high expectations.

“I think it’s a dream job for the right person,” she said. “We’re looking for someone who is absolutely passionate about science and mathematics, someone who can lead the unique ethos of the free school for staff and students, a credible and outstanding teacher themselves who wants to keep on teaching, and someone who really can embody what the school is all about: aiming high and helping everyone who can make the best of their education.”

The school claims it will help students achieve A and A* grades in their A-levels “as a matter of course” and gain places at the country’s top universities.

Mr Prior said achieving that would require a principal capable of really inspiring his or her students.

He said: “They need to be a gifted mathematician or scientist in their own right. But it’s not just about being academic – they need to be able to get it across to students. Maths can be the most dull, turgid subject or the most exciting, inspirational and enticing subject. We want it to be the latter rather than the former.”

The free school would like to have someone in the role by January – or at least Easter – to allow them to shape its curriculum.

The other big job for the Sir Isaac Newton Free School leaders is to find a location.

They aim to secure a site in the centre of Norwich and, while Mr Prior and Mrs de Souza remain tight-lipped on any specific details, they said plans were moving forward.

The Sir Isaac Newton Free School was one of 102 free schools approved by the government earlier this year.

Do you have an education story for the Evening News? Contact Victoria Leggett on 01603 772468 or

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