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Head of Personalised Learning

West Buckland SchoolDevon

This role looks to enhance the traditional demands of the Learning Support role to meet the needs of children today. As such, it is not simply limited to providing for academic needs but appreciates the complex interplay of pastoral requirements and therefore the title is likely to develop into the Head of Personalised Learning and Development (PLD). Its function is to support staff and pupils to be the best that they can and work towards an environment where: 

  • All pupils achieve their personal bests.
  • Teaching and learning is consistently excellent for all pupils.
  • The Head of PLD works closely with the Deputy Head Pastoral and Deputy Head Academic.

Personalised Learning & Development at West Buckland

In the Senior School, pupils with SEND in Year 7 -9 take only one modern foreign language and attend Learning Development Lessons. These classes usually consist of about half a dozen pupils and the emphasis is on acquisition of basic literacy, numeracy and study skills. In Year 10 and 11 some pupils opt for Learning Support in place of a GCSE subject to continue working on these skills, together with study skills to support their wider studies. 

In addition, the senior school deploys Learning Support Assistants to support pupils in timetabled lessons. In Years 7 to 11, the school will electively withdraw pupils from timetabled lessons for 1:1 work; and operates a charging tariff for additional learning support provision.

The post holder will be a member of the school’s Senior Management Team (SMT) with the expectation that they will provide timely, qualified and authoritative information and detail into SMT meetings and debate. Operate as a recognised leader and manager and be confident to present on subject related topics to the parents, prospective families, wider SMT and Governors. 

To assist in the promotion, direction and oversight of high standards of teaching and learning, pupil achievement and progress through effective assessment, direction and support of individual pupils’ needs in conjunction with other relevant staff. 

The Head of PLD is expected to diagnose, create and deliver learning support which totals approximately 40% of the timetable per week leaving the remainder of their timetable as non-contact allocation each week for the diagnostic assessment and psychometric testing of pupils and the writing up of reports leading to Access Arrangements for external exams.

West Buckland is the leading co-educational independent school in North Devon, set in 100 acres on the edge of Exmoor National Park. The school community is proud of its strong academic results, established excellence in sport, creative and performing arts and has a reputation for strong pastoral care. It is a wonderful place to work

If you would like to discuss the position with the Deputy Head Academic, Mr Rob Paler, please contact via: or Deputy Head Pastoral, Mrs Caoimhe Pettingell via  

To apply please complete the  application form along with a full curriculum vitae, and return  to or post to Assistant Bursar (HR & Operations), Bursary, West Buckland School, Barnstaple, Devon EX32 0SX.

Full details and an application form can be downloaded from (under employment) or call 01598 760281 for an application pack. 

Closing date for applications: Friday 3rd December 2021.

Interview will be held in the week of 6th December 2021. The school reserves the right to interview and appoint ahead of this closing and interview date.

West Buckland School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and applicants must be willing to undergo safeguarding screening appropriate to the post, including checks with past employers and the Disclosure & Barring Service. The post is defined as being within the scope of Regulated Activity. 

Supporting documents

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