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Executive Headteacher - Ribblesdale Federation of Schools 


Dear Applicant,

Welcome to our dedicated Executive Headteacher recruitment webpage, which aims to provide you with all the information about our schools and current vacancy. Thank you for taking the time to visit, we hope that the information we have provided encourages you to make an application to our warm and welcoming schools.

The Ribblesdale Federation of Giggleswick Primary, Hellifield Community Primary and Long Preston VA Endowed Primary officially federated in January 2018, formalising a longstanding relationship between the three schools, while seeking to build on and share each other’s strengths and create a sustainable resource base for the future. Staff, pupils and parents/carers have all embraced the move and in the past two years we have already seen significant sharing of experience, ideas and resources across the schools. As the Federation moves into its next phase, it needs to further develop its cohesive identity and review models of service delivery, to ensure that the children, who are at the heart of everything, receive the best educational opportunities available and that all allocated resources are used to maximum effect.

Our schools all have close connectivity to the A65 and are nestled close to the Yorkshire Dales National Park. The three villages are very different, retaining their own identity, but coming together to form cohesive communities, which support the schools. All three schools are successful in their own right with Ofsted rating them as Good, while Long Preston VA Endowed Primary is also rated Good in its SIAMS. Church School inspection. Our children are well-behaved and benefit from the opportunity to build their confidence and independence in the caring and nurturing environment offered by small village schools.

We are encountering a period of dynamic change and the Governors are seeking a new Executive Headteacher with strong leadership and team development skills, ambition, drive and purpose, who will embrace the opportunity to lead from the front, while empowering staff to raise pupil progress and deliver positive outcomes for all pupils, regardless of background or ability. We are supported by a highly committed, experienced, and loyal team of staff, receptive parents, a strong governing body and local communities that are proud of our schools, where pupils are happy, well-behaved and enjoy learning.

As Executive Headteacher, you will be at the forefront of maintaining and developing relationships and collaborations with the wider community, developing our provision and, above all, ensuring that we meet the needs of all our children. We are seeking to appoint a leader who will build on the Federation's many strengths, with a clear plan for school improvement, regular engagement and consultation with parents and carers, instilling continuity and further developing our links with the community and partner organisations.

We believe that The Ribblesdale Federation has capacity for further improvement and that this is an exciting time for an ambitious leader to make a real difference; increasing our pupil numbers, improving teaching outcomes and continuing our efforts to maintain a positive and robust standing in the local communities that we serve. We look forward to a healthy relationship of mutual support and constructive challenge with the new Executive Headteacher.

Should the restrictions on Covid-19 be lifted in the coming weeks, we would encourage you to visit us so we can share with you why we are so proud of our schools, and you will have the opportunity to see what we have to offer. Such a visit is not part of the selection process, and whether or not applicants have visited will not influence the final outcome.

If you would like the opportunity to visit, please email Steve Cooper, HR/Resourcing Adviser, who has been engaged to support us with recruitment to this key role ( For an informal, confidential conversation about the role please call Steve on 01609 536578 / 07976 653898.

I hope you find the information provided useful and informative and that it will encourage you to apply. On behalf of the governing body, thank you again for your interest The Ribblesdale Federation of Schools.

Yours faithfully,

Paul Gibbons
Chair of Governors

The Ribblesdale Federation of Schools, North Yorkshire

Comprising Schools: Giggleswick Primary School, Hellifield Community Primary School & Long Preston VA Endowed Primary School

Post: Executive Headteacher

Number on Roll: 175

Commencing: January 2021

Contract Type: Full Time

Salary: L16 - L22

Contract Term: Permanent

We are looking for an Executive Headteacher who will lead our Federation with vision, passion and positivity. If you are a leader who is ambitious, inspirational and committed to excellence then this appointment will present you with a unique opportunity.

This is an excellent opportunity for an outstanding senior leader to lead, shape and further develop a federation of three primary schools. You will be working alongside a committed team of staff and a governing body that is ambitious for the schools, with high aspirations for all pupils and staff.

The Ribblesdale Federation comprises three village primary schools, nestled close to the Yorkshire Dales National Park, with good connectivity to the A65. Our schools are well-respected and known for their high standards, exemplary pupil behaviour and a fully inclusive model of education; enabling all children to fulfil their full potential whatever their starting points. Our ethos and core values support this model and are lived out in the daily work of the school.

All three schools are successful in their own right, retaining their own identity, with Ofsted rating them as Good, while Long Preston VA Endowed Primary is also rated Good by SIAMs. All three schools have friendly and welcoming environments, where we value our communities, providing opportunities for all pupils to have a wide range of experiences and become independent learners.

Our ambition, and yours, will be that The Ribblesdale Federation plays a pivotal role within primary education in the communities it serves, for promoting the latest developments in teaching, learning and inclusion practices. Our children, who are taken from a broad catchment area, deserve an education that will change their lives and give them the opportunity to fulfil their potential, and in turn you and your staff will enjoy a fulfilling career, releasing your potential and maximising your impact.

Our opportunity
We are looking for an Executive Headteacher who has strong strategic leadership skills, who can galvanise our staff, parents/carers, children and the communities we serve to achieve their very best, through shaping and delivering an inspiring vision. This will mean a strong focus on curriculum delivery and outstanding teaching and learning, the development of every pupil ensuring their best possible progress, working closely with parents and carers and the communities, while continuously seeking ways to make further improvements.

You will inherit three schools which have stable staffing, a strong community ethos and colleagues who are proud to work for a federation which puts the whole child and parental/carer engagement at its very heart.

Aspiration, resilience and the ability to build positive and trusting relationships will be in your character as a leader, as you build on a culture of learning and ambition that will see our children develop, grow and contribute an active part in today’s society. A passion for promoting excellence in teaching and learning and a strong focus on pupils’ achievement and development are qualities you will be able to demonstrate.

We can offer you:

  • Happy and friendly schools, fostering an inclusive and welcoming environment in which to inspire and motivate our children.
  • Significant levels of support from the Local Authority, Diocese, Governing Board and a staff team who are experienced, committed and passionate about our schools.
  • Delightful children who respect each other, have a thirst for learning new things and a staff culture which allows all staff to thrive and develop.
  • An opportunity to see the huge potential that exists here and with clear support, tenacity, energy and the time to make The Ribblesdale Federation of Schools a beacon of excellence in primary education.

For an informal, confidential conversation about the role, please call Steve Cooper who is supporting this recruitment process on behalf of The Ribblesdale Federation of Schools and can be contacted at North Yorkshire County Council on 01609 536578 / 07976 653898.

Should the restrictions on Covid-19 be lifted in the coming weeks, we would encourage you to visit us so we can share with you why we are so proud of our school, allowing you the opportunity to see what we have to offer. If you would like the opportunity to visit, please email

Key dates:
School visits: By arrangement
Application closing date: Midnight, Sunday 28 June
Shortlisting: Wednesday 1 July
Interviews: Wednesday 8 & Thursday 9 July**

**interview days may change depending on Covid-19 restrictions

Video tour of Federation schools (large file)

Supporting Documents
Person Specification
Job Description

When applying please take into account the following:

Supporting Information
The supporting information section of your application should clearly evidence your ability to meet the requirements we have outlined in the person specification. This will be used to shortlist applicants for this role and therefore it is imperative that you provide evidence as requested.

When completing your application, please provide two employment references.