Q&A with the Principal, Rebecca Glover

Posted: 14th December 2017

As 2017 draws to a close, we caught up with our new Principal, Rebecca Glover to ask her a few questions about her experience, views and thoughts on her new role at Surbiton High.

What is your background in teaching?

I have been working in education for the last 27 years. I began my career as a classroom teacher, teaching Geography and Physical Education. I then moved south to a Head of Department position, and moved again to become a Director of Sixth Form.  Thereafter, I was promoted to an Assistant Head, Deputy Head, and more recently, a Head Teacher position which I have held for the past 4 years. I have been fortunate in that I have held senior positions in both curriculum and pastoral roles, and I have worked in high-performing state schools and independent schools. This broad variety of roles and schools has equipped me with the skills to be able to lead effectively and with experience.

What do you like about working in education?

What I enjoy most about the role is seeing children develop, and realising potential in both children and colleagues.  Having the opportunity to influence and shape the future of others is key; a good leader empowers others to be able to lead.  I enjoy the “fun” element that children bring to schools and the endless optimism children have for the future.

What is your philosophy in teaching?

My philosophy on education is that it should recognise the assets and worth of every child that comes through the door.  Education should be an enabling experience that lasts a lifetime. There really is no better job than leading a school, and no better way to make a difference that lasts through generations. My role as a Principal is to ensure children are provided with, and shown, tools with which to cultivate their own gardens of knowledge.

What attracted you to the role of Principal at Surbiton High School?

There are so many aspects of the post that I found appealing! I was initially attracted to the role at Surbiton High School as I was aware of its excellent reputation, both academically and through the extensive Co-curricular programme the School offers. The post allows me to lead a school that is already doing so well in many respects.  Having already established firm foundations, it means that the School is able to be innovative and creative whilst being at the cutting edge of learning, which appeals to me.

How would you describe your style of leadership?

The most effective leaders do not simply have one style of leadership; an effective leader is able to adapt to particular situations and people: it is this ability to change styles that allows schools and organisations to rapidly progress.  Leaders at all levels need to be able to use a range of styles to suit each context and particular situation. I can say that I have an open door policy, relish hearing the ideas of others, and I am always willing to learn.  I would like to think that I listen, reflect and then act.

What are your main aims as Principal at Surbiton High School?

My main aims are to ensure, first and foremost, that the pupils and staff in the School are happy.  Happy children learn.  I would like to ensure that outcomes for pupils continue to improve from the already strong platform of success, and that Co-curricular opportunities expand and adapt to the changing needs of pupils. Surbiton High School needs to ensure that it stays at the forefront of innovation, and that opportunities for its pupils continue to be expanded. In the near future, I plan to set the strategic direction of the School, create alignment, build and sustain teams and relationships, deliver results and get things done!

What changes do you plan to make in the School?

During the first term, I would like to undertake a full review of the School so that I can ascertain strategic priorities. I would very much like Surbiton High School to be known nationally, and internationally, as a centre of excellence in education, and to be at the forefront of teaching and learning practice. I foresee that any changes will therefore ensure we work collectively to deliver this.

Categories: Whole School