Louise gets off to a flying start

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THERE’S a new girl at school in Widdrington Station, and she’s already settling in rather well.

Louise Laskey has been appointed Head of Grange View Church of England First School in the village.

Mrs Laskey, who lives in Morpeth, took on the position in May and was able to take advantage of the short time to settle into her role before the start of the summer holiday.

“It has been a fantastic start to my time at Grange View,” she said.

“The school and the children are absolutely amazing. The staff have been so supportive and enthusiastic about the new initiatives.

“There are some things to change and lots of projects that the children are excited about.”

Mrs Laskey brings more than 15 years’ experience to the job, having been in teaching since 1994 and previously working as Deputy Headteacher at St Michael’s First School in Alnwick.

One of the big changes she will oversee at Grange View is the re-structure of the school’s Early Years unit, which will be revamped to allow reception teaching to take place alongside the nursery class. The new arrangements should be in place in time for the new term in September.

Externally, Mrs Laskey hopes to carry on the work of her predecessor in encouraging children to explore the outdoor learning area, and she also plans to continue improvements to play areas and the yard.

A fund-raising walk and fair at the end of term raised more than £1,000, which the School Council has decided to use for new yard markings and the creation of Buddy Bus Stops, where children who are feeling lonely can go to find a friend.

Mrs Laskey is also keen to build on the school’s international ties and staff will travel to Africa in February to visit schools and set up shared curriculum projects through the Global Schools Partnership.

In the meantime, the Head is wasting no time in making her mark and will spent the summer re-drafting the School Improvement Plan.

“I want to re-visit the plan to help bring standards up across the school. The school is very good at Key Stage 1 and 2, but the Early Years needs a little bit of input,” she said.

Mrs Laskey has taken over from previous Head Mary Rothwell.