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Headteacher Joan McVittie of Woodside High School 'thrilled' to receive damehood
A secondary school headteacher who was made a Dame in the Queens New Year’s Honours list says she was thrilled to receive the recognition.
Last week it was announced Joan McVittie, headteacher of Woodside High School, in Wood Green, would be made a dame in recognition for her services to education.
Dame Joan has been at the helm of the school for six years and was instrumental in turning the school around after it was placed in special measures by Ofsted.
The 60-year-old, of Woodford Green, said: “When I first heard I was very excited and I was absolutely thrilled and honoured.
“It’s not just for me though, it’s a reflection for the whole school and the hard work the team here have put in. I just want to thank all of them for their help in making a difference in the school and the pupil’s lives.
“The best part of the job for me is seeing all the children grow and develop as they learn and the progress they make.”
Since 2006, the headtecher has overseen a rise in student attainment and achievement and a dramatic improvement in exam results that led the school to be judged outstanding by Ofsted in 2011.
She added: “During my time here the school has worked so hard and to see that progress has been a real highlight.
“There have been a lot of changes in education since I became a headteacher but what I think we do really well as a school is work to embrace those changes.”
Dame Joan was born in Hamilton, Scotland and moved to Manchester when she was ten. She has two daughters aged 28 and 30, who have both gone into the teaching profession.