The next head teacher at St Helena’s secondary school will be “coming home” after 20 years working away from the island.
Paul Starkie is married to Lisa, who is St Helenian. They will also be bringing their son.
He said: “Lisa, Zac and I are excited to be coming home, to see our family and re-connect with our many friends.”
Paul worked at Prince Andrew School as a UK government adviser between 1988 and 1992.
He is currently head of the secondary section of The British School of Brussels – in the Belgian home city of the European Union. He had a similar role at The British International School in Jakarta, in Indonesia. He is also completing UK training as a schools inspector.
He said: “There are challenges and opportunities for education in the years ahead and I am looking forward to working together with stakeholders to ensure that Prince Andrew School is a beacon of success in the future.”
The school has struggled with a shortage of maths teachers in the past year, though at least one specialist teacher from overseas has now been appointed after the pay deal was improved.
Paul will be taking on a tough job, with a target of doubling the number of students achieving five good GCSE grades. The advertisement said a “well developed sense of humour” would be an advantage.
Colin Moore, director of education on St Helena, said Paul would succeed current PAS head Abraham Swart when his contract ends in December.
Colin said: “Paul has a wealth of knowledge and experience and I am very much looking forward to working with him when he comes into post.
“I would like to express my congratulations to Paul and his family. I know that everyone will wish them a very warm welcome when they return home to St Helena.
“Whilst I am not able to give any date of when Paul will commence work, it is safe to say that he and I are already in regular discussion about school matters so that we effect a smooth handover of leadership.
“Abraham has led the school during a time of considerable change and we would like to wish him well and thank him for his services to education on St Helena.”
(All information supplied by St Helena Government).