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Next steps: what comes after headship?

The skills you acquire as a headteacher are useful and desirable, so when the time comes to move on, the direction you take is up to you

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It was after much agonising and many sleepless nights that I contacted my chair of governors to tell him that we should start the process of appointing my successor as headteacher of our school.

I had been in the profession for nearly 40 years, but I knew that it was time to go. This was in the summer of 2016. At the tender age of 59, I officially “retired”.

When I say retired, I mean that I took my pension. But after 26 years as a headteacher, I wasn’t going to be content with a warm fire and a cup of cocoa. I knew I wanted to do something else. The question was: what?

Too often, ...

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