Expert school leader appointed as new headteacher of Medway school

New headteacher for Parallel Learning Trust

An expert new leader has been appointed as the new headteacher of Inspire Academy in Chatham.

Martyn O’Donnell will start at the special school at the end of July, taking over from Stephen Griffiths who has been Interim Head of School since January.

However, Mr O’Donnell is not new to the school – he is currently the Director of Performance and Standards at Parallel Learning Trust (PLT, of which Inspire Academy is part) and was previously Headteacher of Inspire.

When he started that role in 2017, Inspire was rated Inadequate by Ofsted, but just a year later he had improved the school to a Good rating.

Ofsted confirmed the school was Good at its latest inspection earlier this year.

Inspire Academy is due to transfer from PLT to Rivermead Inclusive Trust shortly, and Mr O’Donnell will remain as Head when the school joins Rivermead – thereby ensuring continuity of leadership.

Angela Barry OBE, Chief Executive of Parallel Learning Trust, said:

“I am so delighted we have secured Martyn as leader. Not only is he an expert school leader with a track record of success, much of that success has been when he led Inspire Academy. His knowledge of the school and the success he has enjoyed with it over so many years means he was the stand-our candidate.

“I am extremely grateful to Stephen Griffiths for the super job he has done while we have been undertaking a recruitment process. He will hand over Inspire to Martyn with the school in a strong position.”

Martyn O’Donnell said:

“Inspire Academy is such a wonderful school, with great staff, wonderful students and supportive parents. I feel very privileged to be leading the school and can’t wait to get started.”


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