THE headteacher of an Isle of Wight secondary school is to take up a post on the mainland.
Medina College headteacher Nathan Thomas, who joined the school in May 2011, will leave in September 2014 to become headteacher of a school in Andover.
Last year, Ofsted head Sir Michael Wilshaw praised Mr Thomas’ efforts to improve standards. The school was rated as requiring improvement following its last Ofsted inspection.
Mr Thomas said: "I have loved every minute of my time at Medina and leaving has not been an easy decision to make. The staff and students of Medina will always hold a special place in my heart and I leave knowing that Medina is in a strong position to continue on its journey towards 'outstanding.'
"There has been a great deal of change at Medina in the last three years to make the College a suitable learning environment for Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4 learners.
"In September 2011, education on the Island was in a difficult place; 750 new students and 50 new staff arrived into a school with systems and structures which were not fit for purpose.
"Three years later, whilst the journey is by no means complete, we have come a long, long way.
"Everything at Medina has improved since those difficult early days, particularly in the teaching and learning, behaviour and safety of the students and this is now having a good impact on the progress the students are making."
Mr Thomas’s new post is 15 minutes from his home in Winchester: "I have made the decision to leave as my wife and children, who live in Winchester, want me to come home.
"My wife is an amazing woman, who over the last three years has essentially been a single mother of two and full time carer for her mother, at the same time as holding down a full time job.
"I miss my family hugely and feel that Medina is now in a good position and I can leave and let the next head take the college forward on the next part of its exciting journey.
"People who know me will know, I am passionate about education and passionate about Medina and will be working tirelessly with the staff over the next six months to ensure all of the students are pushed to reach their full potential in the summer."
Chair of Governors Terence Hart stated: "Nathan, supported by his staff, has done a fantastic job in developing Medina College, to the point at which we are confident it will get better and better.
"Nathan has also contributed to the ongoing debate amongst the Island education community about significantly improving education overall and will be a great loss to the college, federation and the Island.
"The governing body will advertise for a new Head Teacher immediately and aim to attract a high calibre candidate, to continue the excellent work that is Nathan’s legacy."