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Women deputies 'more successful'

Women deputy heads are succeeding in greater numbers in becoming secondary headteachers - and may even stand a better chance than men.

The latest official figures show that whereas five years ago in secondary schools, 2.4 male deputies got promoted for every female, last year only 1.6 men got the top job for every woman made head; a success rate that gives them a better than even chance since there are 1.9 male deputies in secondary schools for every female one.

The percentage of women deputy heads has remained around 34 per cent for the past four years; 37 per cent of the secondary heads promoted last year were women compared with 29 per cent in 1991-92.

In primary schools the success rate for women also increased. Whereas in 1991-92, 1.6 women got primary headships for every man, last year more than two women were promoted for every man. That still means a woman deputy in a primary is less likely to be promoted than a man, however, since primary women deputies outnumber the men by almost 2.3:1.

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