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The Hallfield School new Headmaster has big plans for the school when he takes hold of the reins in September.
Keith Morrow, who has just wrapped up his eleven-year Headship at The Elms in Long Eaton, says he is looking forward his move to Birmingham and marking his first year by celebrating the school’s 140th year with a series of events and activities.
“It is going to be a big year for Hallfield as the school celebrates its 140th year during my first year at the helm, and I will only be the 14th Headmaster in its entire history – an exciting yet daunting thought! September is a big month. All children, and perhaps even parents, will have a mixture of excitement and trepidation thinking about the start of the new school year. This year I will be sharing those emotions with the children as I start my new and exciting role as Headmaster of Hallfield School. I am very much looking forward to it.”
Find out more about Mr Morrow here and his drive to become a Headteacher here:
What made you become a Headteacher?
I never really thought of becoming a teacher until I was in my sixth form. I always thought I’d become a doctor, but my Head of Sixth Form couldn’t get me a placement in a hospital, so instead I started a placement at a local primary school. Within a few weeks, I realised I absolutely loved being in a primary school. I loved the enthusiasm of the children and their love of learning. I decided that I wanted to become a teacher, then a Head!
What is your favourite thing about your role?
I’ve been a Head for 18 years and I couldn’t think of a job I’d rather do! Teachers may create the weather in their classrooms but Heads create the climate.
I love the sheer variety of my role and the ability to change things and make life better. I love the fact that if any part of my role is proving challenging or difficult, I can simply step outside my office and go and visit children in a classroom. I guarantee that an hour being enthused and inspired by young children playing or leaning is enough to remind me how lucky I am to work with the most creative minds on the planet - children!
What has been your biggest achievement to date?
I’ve had so much pleasure and satisfaction from the three schools I’ve led as Headmaster, this is hard one for me to answer!
I was delighted to get my first Headship at the age of 30, proud of the Outstanding and Excellent inspection outcomes of all the schools I’ve led and delighted to have doubled the size of The Elms and made it into the leading prep school in the East Midlands.
But my biggest achievement has been creating a learning culture in the schools I have led. I am proud to have created a climate where teachers and children alike enjoy coming to school, learning together and trying new things without the fear of failure.
It’s a pleasure when children I’ve taught or who have been part of the schools I have led come back to see me and tell me how fondly they look back on their primary education. That’s the biggest achievement for any Headteacher or teacher - to know you made a positive difference to the life of a child.
Can you tell us about your aims for Hallfield?
I have many! I want to take a good school with a distinguished history and make sure it’s not only the prep school of choice in Birmingham but also develops a national reputation for the quality of education on offer.
Watch this space.
What appealed to you about Hallfield?
Hallfield is a school with huge potential. It’s got beautiful grounds, dedicated staff and I was struck by the friendliness of the pupils when I looked around. They seemed well-grounded and hard working.
I know I’m going to be very happy here and I have been delighted with the warm welcome the pupils, staff and governors have shown me. There’s real appetite for an adventure!
What are your thoughts on Birmingham?
Part of me is a little nervous getting to grips with living in a city when I’ve been living in villages all of my adult life.
But I’m looking forward to taking advantage of the huge cultural opportunities that such a dynamic city offers; music, theatres, museums and great places to eat out.
There is certainly a growing confidence about Birmingham and I’ve spoken to many business leaders about how the city is growing and developing with many new jobs and businesses relocating here. It is certainly an exciting time to be in Birmingham.
What are you passionate about?
Lots of things, including education! I truly believe in the ability of a great education to transform the lives of children, to help them become the best versions of themselves they can be and to aspire to achieve their dreams.
Above all I want children to enjoy their education and be happy at school. Childhood is precious and goes all too quickly!
What/who challenges you?
Despite being a happy and positive person, I’m afraid I’m naturally a dissatisfied person! My mantra is ‘getting better never stops’. No matter how good something is, there is always a way of making it better, by doing it differently or trying something new.
What drives me mad is when people say ‘we’ve always done it this way’ and are unwilling to try new things or take onboard new ideas.
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