Letters from Principal Designate

Introduction from the Principal Designate – 18th July 2019

Dear Parents and Carers,

It’s only a matter of days until the summer term ends and the, hopefully sunny, summer break begins, an occasion I’m sure your child(ren) are awaiting with real anticipation! I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself to you, ahead of my official start on 1st September.

The end of this term is a special one for me, as it marks the start of the exciting journey ahead for me and the academy, as I take up the role of Principal of Co-op Academy Walkden.

I am especially pleased that I have been able to spend a number of days in the academy over the past few weeks, enabling me to introduce myself to staff, and to many students and parents, and I thank everyone for the warm welcome I have received. 

I’ve already learned a lot about the academy, enabling me to start planning for an amazing future together.  The Year 7 Welcome Evening at the end of June was a particular highlight for me, meeting the enthusiastic Year 6 pupils, who, like me, are excited for their new beginning and to be joining the academy community in September.

I was brought up locally, in Boothstown and, as a result, I know the local area very well. I also started my teaching career with a placement at one of our feeder primary schools, St Andrews in Boothstown, from which I have great memories. Although I studied science, and trained to teach, in Newcastle upon Tyne, when I moved back ‘home’ my first house was on Old Clough Lane, where I lived for many years. The opportunity to be Principal of this academy, in the heart of the community I know well, is one I very much look forward to!

After 21 years in teaching, I have a simple view of what makes a great school. My priorities are to ensure that the curriculum we offer, the quality of teaching and the broader whole academy experience that is on offer to our students, are second to none. Everything we do will be designed to bring out the best in all our students and encourage each of them to fulfil their potential in whichever areas their interests and talents lie. This will be delivered in a safe, disciplined environment founded on mutual respect and responsibility. As an academy leader, and as a parent myself, I embrace the responsibility we have as an academy to provide for the young people in our care, and ensure that we look after and cherish each of them as individuals.

I firmly believe in strong community partnerships, and I will concentrate on developing relationships between the academy, parents, local residents and businesses. Excellent communication, and opportunities to share views, will be key to this. Your views as parents and carers are extremely important to me. I will review the recently completed Foretel survey over the summer, and this will be an  important source of information in setting my short, medium and long-term priorities for the school. 

Starting in the autumn term I will undertake a number of focussed parent and carer forums, where you will be able to share your views and ask key questions. The dates and areas of focus for each of these will be published well in advance and your attendance would be greatly welcomed.

I understand that the past few months have seen a great deal of change at the school, however I know that with our sharp focus on the things that matter most, with strong support from you as parents and carers, the academy and students have a very bright and successful future ahead. I want us all to feel proud that we are part of the Co-op Academy Walkden community.


First day back arrangements

Students should arrive at school on Wednesday 4th September, 2019 and gather in the Atrium at the times below, where staff will meet and welcome them. Students must ensure they arrive on time and be in the correct, full school uniform (trainers, canvas shoes, leisure shoes etc. are not permitted).

Year 7 Pupils (& Year 10 Peer Mentors):

                           Gather in the Atrium from 8.15 

                           Assembly at 8.30  

                           Move to Form at 9.00


Years 8-11:

                           Gather in the Atrium from 9.15 

                           Years 8-10 move to Form at 9.30

                           Year 11 Assembly at 9.30

                           Year 10 Assembly at 9.50

                           Year 9 Assembly at 10.10

                           Year 8 Assembly at 10.30

Morning break will be at 10.50 as normal.


For now, may I wish you and your families a wonderful summer and I very much look forward to seeing you all in September.

Best wishes

Mr M Hacker

Principal Designate

Letter from PD 18 July 19