Crisis-hit Northfield Academy has appointed a new acting headteacher who will start after the October holidays.
Yesterday, we revealed that Douglas Watt was stepping down from the position after three-and-a-half years in the role.
In a letter sent to parents and pupils, and seen by the Press and Journal, he said he had made the decision “for personal reasons that could not have been anticipated”.
Aberdeen City Council has now confirmed Craig McDermott will take on the role of acting headteacher from Monday, October 30.
Mr McDermott currently works as a headteacher for additional support needs and outreach across the city, and is part of the “tactical team” which was set up to help make improvements at Northfield Academy.
Mr Watt wrote: “In order to accommodate my request, the local authority has secured support from Mr Craig McDermott to take up post as acting headteacher at Northfield Academy.
“This will ensure a smooth transition and stability for the school, and I have no doubt that you will give Craig a warm welcome and your full support as a community going forward. I wish Craig every success in this post.”
An Aberdeen City Council spokeswoman said: “An acting headteacher has been appointed at Northfield Academy from October 30.
“Craig McDermott is an experienced headteacher who has supported Northfield as part of the tactical team.”
New headteacher as Douglas Watt leaves Northfield
Mr Watt joined the teaching team at Northfield Academy in March 2020 and has described his time at the school as “extremely rewarding”.
He has played a vital role in a three-year plan to make improvements at the school following an “unsatisfactory” inspection in January this year.
The ongoing plan includes adding new courses to the curriculum, adding new responsibilities for teachers and increasing efforts to fill vacancies.
Education convener Martin Greig said: “The improvement work at the school continues as planned. The pupils and the community deserve to have the support that is needed to make sure that positive change happens.”
In his letter, Mr Watt added: “I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Northfield Academy, and it has been an absolute privilege to serve the Northfield community and work with the incredible young people, parents, carers, school partners and staff team over this time.
“As I reflect on my time in post, there have been a range of challenges that our school community has faced over the last three years including the Covid pandemic and public health implications, alterations to national SQA examinations, cost of living challenges and national strikes to name but a few.
“I am immensely proud that through it all the community has pulled together, supported one another, and navigated these challenges safely, and it is this sense of togetherness that I shall miss most of all.”