2024 Spring Term

The know zone

  • The leading characters
    Assistant Headteacher Rich Atterton shines a spotlight on ASCL's remarkable 150-year history and says the story of the association is really the story of you, its members. More
  • Preserve and protect
    William Richardson explains how lockdown created a golden opportunity to recover, catalogue and permanently preserve ASCL's 150-year history. More
  • A look back through time
    Primary education has a rich and vibrant history, evolving over centuries to become the system we know today. Tiffnie Harris unveils the fascinating tale of how education for the youngest minds has transformed from its humble beginnings. More
  • When can I leave school?
    Sixth form education is still a relatively new concept in the context of the last 150 years of education. Kevin Gilmartin looks back at how our present sixth form sector has evolved. More
  • The evolution of business leadership
    Emma Harrison takes readers on a 150-year journey of school business leadership. More
  • Thanks and best wishes...
    From individual support and advice from our hotline and officers to the advice and guidance provided throughout the pandemic and beyond, here ASCL members share their memories and interactions with us and send their best wishes to the association. More
  • Embracing change
    Headteacher Tanya Douglas says she's extremely proud to be one of the longest serving members on ASCL Council - the engine room of the association's policymaking. More
  • Past Tense?
    Carl Smith shares a headmaster's log from 150 years ago and it may or may not surprise you that many of the challenges of the past remain to this day. More
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Thanks and best wishes...

From individual support and advice from our hotline and officers to the advice and guidance provided throughout the pandemic and beyond, here ASCL members share their memories and interactions with us and send their best wishes to the association.

Excellent service and support 

I joined ASCL when I was first promoted to senior leadership. Over the years, I have been no stranger to the ASCL hotline, drawing on the fast and accurate help of experts. I have had my fair share of challenges and field officers have always provided an excellent service and support. 

In recent months, I have joined Council. An incredible opportunity to mix with brilliant people and a seat at the policy table. I always recommend senior colleagues to join. 

Martin Blain
Headteacher, Galleywall Primary School, London 


Guiding light 

ASCL advice is always useful and reassuring but, during the pandemic, General Secretary Geoff Barton was literally our guiding light. He cared, he represented us, he supported us, he was the voice of reason. ASCL was there at our moment of greatest need. Thank you. 

Caroline Jordan
Headington School, Oxford 


Working tirelessly 

ASCL works tirelessly supporting members and providing appropriate challenge within the education sector, however, the support, communication and kindness offered during the pandemic was simply outstanding. When others were losing control, ASCL was at the forefront providing care, guidance and humility through such a difficult and challenging period. 

Mark Colman
Regional Finance Partner, Ormiston Academies Trust 


ASCL memories 

I joined SHA when I was appointed a headteacher on the Isle of Man in 1998. I was elected to Council (www.ascl.org.uk/Council) in 2004 and served 18 years, including as chair of committees, honorary secretary and membership officer. During those years, I was privileged to participate in the transition to ASCL, including discussion of an appropriate name that would be inclusive and top the list. 

We widened membership to senior leaders in secondary schools and colleges and latterly primary schools to reflect the changing nature of school structures. 

At first, Council was very much led by members who were serving school and college leaders. Over time, a team of professional specialists was appointed to help steer us through the increasing complexities of educational leadership. 

ASCL has gone from strength to strength and become a leading voice in shaping educational policy while remaining there to protect and serve members when they need support. 

Sue Moore
Retired Head, Queen Elizabeth II High School, Peel, and Isle of Man Branch Secretary and Local Representative since 2001 


Voice of reassurance 

A huge thank you to the ASCL team for supporting me recently. The field officer dealing with my case was a voice of reassurance and provided sound advice. He helped restore my faith in education employment. Happy 150th anniversary. 

Deb Wilson
Secondary Principal, Leicestershire 


Forever grateful 

ASCL has consistently provided the highest quality advice, guidance and reassurance over the many years that I have been a school leader. It always has been the voice of reason and common sense throughout the madness that has surrounded us in recent years. I will always be forever grateful for that. 

John Gilligan
Head of College, Arthur Mellows Village College, Peterborough 


Proud to be a member 

I have real pride in not only following my dadís footsteps into headship but also in joining the union that he was a member of for more than 20 years (ASCLís predecessor, the Secondary Heads Association (SHA)). Having spent nearly a decade now as a member I am grateful for the expert guidance and support itís given me. Happy anniversary, ASCL! 

Kate Claydon
Headteacher, Blatchington Mill School, Brighton and Hove

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