Thriving school needs extra staff

Matt Eastham, headteacher at Priory Academy, Penwortham, with some of the pupils
Matt Eastham, headteacher at Priory Academy, Penwortham, with some of the pupils
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A South Ribble school is bucking the national trend by having to take on extra staff to cope with growing pupil 
numbers.

While many schools are having to juggle their budgets to avoid losing teachers, Priory Academy in Penwortham has been busy recruiting.

Over the last few years, the numbers of new starters has steadily increased at the Crow Hills Road school, Lancashire Post Secondary School of the Year.

Last September 167 year sevens started, there were 125 in the 2011 intake.

Now, 175 primary school leavers are due to start in September, which means the school is full.

Headteacher Matt Eastham said: “We are taking on additional members of staff in English, maths and science due to increasing numbers of pupils which is something we are delighted to do.

“Our capacity is 180 and we are delighted that 175 pupils

will be joining us in September, and this is likely to increase over the coming months so we should be full to capacity which is 180, which is definitely worth 
celebrating.

“This means next year we will increase our total pupil role to approximately 710 pupils from 650 last year.

Mr Eastham, who was named headteacher of the year in the 2016 LEP Education Awards, added: “It is really encouraging to see Priory continuing to grow in 
popularity.

“Having pupil numbers which allow us to employ the very best staff to deliver a wide variety of different subjects, yet remaining sufficiently small enough to care about each individual pupil.

“We have had a lot to shout about in the last few years.

“We’ve won local and national awards, had superb exam results, have built a number of state-of-the-art buildings and now we are attracting even more students.”