Just 39 secondary headteachers in England are black, research shows

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Only 39 secondary headteachers in England are black, according to new research laying bare the under-representation of minority ethnic groups among school leaders.

The analysis of government figures by academy chain Ark shows that there are only 24 female and 15 male black and black/white mixed-race heads in more than 3,000 secondaries across the country.

The numbers amount to just 1.1 per cent of all secondary headteachers in England, despite 4.5 per cent of the general population in England and Wales being black or mixed race.

One black headteacher, Matt Jones (pictured), believes the pigeonholing of black teachers into pastoral roles and their lack of confidence in the system – and sometimes themselves – contributes to the under-representation.

Lucy Heller, chief executive of Ark, which employs two of the 15 black male secondary headteachers, says it is important for teachers and school leaders to be representative of the communities they serve.

“It’s clear from these figures that we still have a long way to go,” she says. “We know that our headteachers can be very powerful role models for students, demonstrating that hard work and effort can be rewarded with professional success."

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Richard Vaughan

Richard has been writing about politics, policy and technology in education for nearly five years after joining TES in 2008. He joined TES from the building press having been a reporter and then later news editor at the Architects’ Journal. Before then he studied at Cardiff University’s school of journalism. Richard can be found tweeting at @richardvaughan1

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