Primary schools in Carrick to share a head teacher

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Two primary schools in Carrick are set to share a head teacher after South Ayrshire council formalised a current arrangement.

The move means Gemma Rooney will officially become head teacher at Sacred Heart Primary School in Girvan and at St Cuthbert’s Primary in Maybole.

The council had major difficulties in appointing a head teacher to Sacred Heart Primary earlier this year.

The post was advertised four times between January and May this year with the post being vacated on 2 March.

Only one applicant responded in total but they withdrew before the interview stage.

At that time Mrs Rooney agreed to temporarily act as head teacher for both schools, but following last weeks Leadership Panel decision this has now been made permanent.

A meeting in May with the Diocesan Edcuation Strategy group agreed to place a third national advert but this once again produced no applicants.

Consultation then took place with parent councils in each of the schools with the councils and parents in both schools showing willingness to proceed with a shared headship agreement, but stating that both schools should retain separate identities.

The parent councils also came to an agreement that when or if Mrs Rooney leaves the post, there would be plans in place for each school to have a separate head teacher again.

The formalised agreement confirms that Mrs Rooney will have no teaching commitments due to her extra responsibilities, which also comes with an increase in salary.

The shared headship agreement between Sacred Heart and St Cuthbert Primary Schools will be the fourth to operate in South Ayrshire education with shared headship schemes currently operating at Colmonell and Ballantrae Primary schools where Yvonne Templeton is the head teacher.

Fraser Baird is the head teacher at both Barr and Barrhill Primary Schools while Karen Butchart is the head at Straiton and Kirkmichael primary schools.

The council don’t anticipate any savings as part of the arrangement.