It was great to talk to Simon again and reflect on the journey we have both been on over the last ten years. Over the last ten years I have spent so many happy times at Carr Manor; with Tony Blair who officially opened the new school building, with Jason Robinson who had the new house named after him, with Fabian Hamilton MP when the school won the Kellogg's breakfast award, with Martin Wainwright from the Guardian writing about PfI schools, with Brian Close, Eddie Gray and Mike Tomlinson nat the Sports College launch, at the Leeds Architecture Awards when the school building won an important award and so many early mornings with Simon and his brilliant team.
Carr Manor High School is another of those places where you can see, through their real success story, the Education Leeds story. It was great to sit and talk to Simon, who is an inspirational headteacher, about the journey the school has been on from potential closure in split site and unloved accommodation to an oversubscribed, increasingly successful and innovative school occupying a fantastic PFI building.
I sometimes need to pinch myself because what we have achieved, at Carr Manor High School and at so many other great schools across the city, is simply unbelievable. We also talked about Simon's personal journey from Matthew Murray High School to Cathedral School in Wakefield and back to Carr Manor and Merrion House. It has been a privilege to work with Simon over the years and his brilliant team and to watch the transformation of teaching and learning take place at what has become a great school serving a diverse and challenging community. Simon's passionate commitment to Carr Manor and Leeds shone through our coffee break and it is deeply reassuring to know that Simon is building on the powerful legacy we left; the culture, the values and the relationships alongside a relentless and uncompromising commitment to standards and outcomes for every child and young person... whatever it takes!