Head teacher recruitment


Woodcroft is a very special school, celebrating its sixtieth anniversary year at the forefront of independent SEN provision. Our long-standing headteacher will be retiring in 2024 and we are looking for a replacement to take forward his excellent work and respond to the ever-changing requirements of our pupils, whose needs cannot be met elsewhere.

Job description summary

  • The head teacher at Woodcroft reports to the board of directors.
  • As designated safeguarding officer they are responsible for the care of pupils in loco parentis as well as the safety of staff and visitors.
  • They contribute fully to the school’s direction and policy development, ensuring the provision of flexible individual education, therapy, behaviour and communication and pastoral care strategies.
  • Upholding our ethos and established culture the head teacher promotes our values and high standards, celebrates our successes – and recognises and makes changes where we need to improve.
  • As both a strategic and hands-on manager the head teacher is expected to work closely with pupils, parents, staff, and directors; and local authority professionals at all levels. The head teacher delegates collaboratively and effectively to the senior management team and wider staff.

Person specification summary

Qualifications and experience

  • Qualified teacher status, degree (additional senior leadership qualification desirable).
  • Extensive experience of teaching and senior leadership within a special school.

Knowledge and understanding

  • The SEN statutory framework.
  • National curriculum in England: framework for key stages 1 to 3 and SEN related curriculum frameworks.
  • A range of SEN specific curriculum, assessment and progress recording programmes, including assessment for learning.
  • Therapeutic, medical and behavioural strategies, including physical intervention, and multidisciplinary working.

Personal and professional qualities and skills

  •  The ability to define the role and responsibilities of an effective head teacher, and identify the skills and strengths that would enable them to succeed in the role.
  • The ability to identify where improvement or progress is required of an organisation, and to devise, articulate and implement a plan in response.
  • A high level of integrity with a proactive, tenacious and flexible approach to problem solving.
  • Demonstrable courage and emotional resilience to do and say what is required to promote the welfare and development of pupils, staff and the school.
  • Congruence with the ethos, aims and values of Woodcroft School.
  • The extensive skills required for working with pupils with a wide range of complex special educational, therapeutic and behavioural needs and an understanding of the requirements for maintaining a safe, orderly and healthy environment for all users of the school.

About Woodcroft

Established in 1963, Woodcroft is owned and directed by the family of two of the founders. An independent SEN primary day school, Woodcroft is set in beautiful garden surroundings in Epping Forest on the outskirts of north east London.

Woodcroft is approved by the DfE for up to 50 pupils between 5 and 13 who rely on our highly specialist multidisciplinary staff team of around 70 people.

In March 2023 Ofsted judged the school to have met independent school standards and to be good in its overall effectiveness and in respect of the individual criteria. We aim to be recognised by all as an outstanding school.

Woodcroft’s independence allows for quick, flexible and sometimes unconventional responses to the changing needs of its pupils. The school enjoys a very positive culture and excellent working relationships with parents and sending authorities, which results in the school normally being well subscribed.

Woodcroft is a great place to work, with a friendly welcoming team, lovely forest surroundings and a unique homely atmosphere.

We are an equal opportunities employer welcoming applications from all sections of the community.

Woodcroft is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of its pupils and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. Posts advertised are exempted from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 and are subject to online, police and enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service checks.

Salary and benefits

Salary range: £61,789 to £84,391

Plus, an employer’s contribution to the relevant Teachers’ Pension scheme (current contribution 23.6%)

Woodcroft operates a 37-week school year


Informal visits: until 19/12/23

Applications close: 10/01/2024

Selection and interviews: weeks commencing 22/01/24 and 29/01/24 

Start date: September 2024 (possibly January 2025 if required)

Next steps

For more information, including a full job description and person specification, or to enquire about an informal visit or application, please contact our office manager, Trish Stokes, on 020 8508 1369, or email trish@woodcroftschool.net