Kantor King Solomon headteacher to leave for ‘personal reasons’
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Kantor King Solomon headteacher to leave for ‘personal reasons’

Barkingside secondary announces that Matthew Slater will quit his post after a spell of unexplained absence spanning the whole of 2017-18

Kantor King Solomon school in Illford, where the incident took place
Kantor King Solomon school in Illford, where the incident took place

Governors at Kantor King Solomon High School in Barkingside have said headteacher Matthew Slater is to leave after an unexplained absence spanning the whole 2017-18 academic term.

The school said only that his departure was for “personal reasons,” in-line with the explanation offered in October when he was confirmed as long-term absent.

Slater’s deputy, Hanelle Reece, has been acting headteacher since September and now takes over officially.

In a letter to parents on Thursday, the school’s Governors said: “Mr Slater has decided to leave Kantor KSHS for personal reasons. He has asked that we pass on his good wishes and thanks to all the KKSHS staff, parents, carers and students for making his time at the school so enjoyable.”

Before joining in 2015, Slater had been praised by then-Prime Minister David Cameron for his track record as a “turnaround head,” who had redirected the fortunes of failing schools.

When he joined KKHS he recognised the need for consistency, saying: “I’m the fourth substantive person to be headteacher in as many years. It needs certainty and long-term security. My intention is to stay here for as long as I can.”

Last month Reece emailed parents to reassure them that their children were safe following an undisclosed “allegation against a member of staff”.

In another message lacking in detail, she told parents not to worry, as relevant systems were in place, saying: “After an allegation was made against a member of staff, I wanted to reassure all parents that the safeguarding policy and arrangements at our school are robust.”

The school is rated ‘Good’ by Ofsted, whose last inspection report in 2016 stated: “The school’s arrangements for safeguarding are effective.”

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