Under the leadership of Headmaster Sir Kevin Satchwell, Thomas Telford School has established itself as one of the country’s top comprehensives.
Sir Kevin has been with the school since it opened in 1991. Knighted for his work less than a decade later, his passion for teaching is as strong as ever and he continues to push the boundaries of educational provision.
He said: “I would be a teacher for nothing. It is being with young people. There is nothing more satisfying than watching them go on to achieve something. It’s a fantastic job that I’ve got.”
Over the school’s 20 year trailblazing history, it has not only focussed on educating its own students but, through its online courses, has provided learning for over 100 other educational institutions and raised millions of pounds for the West Midlands.
With 1300 students and 1500 applications for every 160 new places, Thomas Telford School’s popularity is born from its excellent reputation.
Sir Kevin said: “The school was started as a research development initiative, established to innovate and break the mould of secondary education. The Thomas Telford School model is often referred to by education ministers and Prime Ministers as the one that all schools should consider.”
It is also the main sponsor for three Academies, in Walsall, Sandwell and Madeley, and is partnered with Staffordshire University, providing teacher training for over 80 graduates.
“Our aim falls in line with Staffordshire University’s because we want to give as many students a chance as possible,” Sir Kevin said. “There is great synergy between training teachers and Staffs because it’s very forward thinking, it’s always looking to innovate and change, and we’re very much looking forward to developing our working relationship.”
Having attained a Bachelor of Arts through the Open University in 1978, Sir Kevin’s teaching career started in Liverpool, where he spent 14 years as a Head of PE and Deputy Head, before becoming Headmaster of a school in Wolverhampton.
In 2010, he became a Trustee of the Edge Foundation; A charitable trust who support alternative pathways to success for young adults.
The award of Honorary Doctor of Staffordshire University is bestowed upon Sir Kevin in recognition of support in widening access to higher education and forging strong links with other educational institutions, as well as the successful PGCE partnership with Staffordshire University.