Kingsley School, Bideford, has announced that Mr Pete Last has been appointed as its new Headmaster. Mr Last will replace Mr Simon Woolcott, the current Headmaster, when he retires on 1st January 2017.
Chair of Governors, Mr David Pinney, said the appointing panel were unanimous in their decision that Mr Last is the perfect Headmaster to take the School forward.
Mr Pinney said: “Mr Last clearly articulated an inspiring vision which will enhance the strengths of Kingsley School and embrace new ways of learning, add value to the co-curricular and pastoral support at the School, and lead an accelerated rate of investment in the school buildings, sports facilities, classrooms and boarding houses at Kingsley School.
“With Mr Woolcott retiring we knew we needed to appoint a new Head of the highest calibre, and we are very fortunate to appoint such a new leader of our School. Mr Last, who is married with three children, joins Kingsley School from Stowe School where he is an exceptionally experienced and talented schoolmaster. As Deputy Head at Stowe he has been at the heart of one of England’s leading independent boarding schools for over a decade,” added Mr Pinney.
Mr and Mrs Last both come from Kent but had to travel all the way to India where they met and fell in love whilst working at Hebron International School in Ooty. After 6 years in India they returned to Lord Wandsworth College in Hampshire where Pete taught Geography, Debs taught Art and together they ran a girls’ boarding house. After 9 years they made the move to Stowe School where Pete is currently Deputy Head Pastoral, Senior Housemaster, Head of Boarding and Housemaster of a boys’ house. Debs is a professional artist who also runs her own very successful Art School and is looking forward to being part of the vibrant creative scene in North Devon. They are very excited about moving to Bideford with their Springer Spaniel, Archie, who loves the sea.
Pete was educated at Alleyn’s School, London and read Geography at St. Catharine’s College, Cambridge. More recently he has completed a Masters in Educational Leadership at Buckingham University. Pete and Debs Last have three children: Alistair who is a teacher at Stowe, Chloe who is completing a Masters degree in Geography at Durham and Sophia who is at the Chelsea School of Art in London. Pete is passionate about education (and Arsenal) and is looking forward to helping to lead Kingsley forward into a new and exciting chapter of its history.
Mr Pinney said: ”May I take this opportunity to commend everyone involved in the recruitment process, especially the pupils who were involved in one of the interview panels. Children are our greatest asset at Kingsley and they certainly showed Mr Last that our school is full of enthusiasm, energy and smart creativity; alongside demonstrating their genuine care and consideration for one another.”
Mr Last said: “I am delighted and honoured to have been chosen to lead this wonderful school. I am really looking forward to working with the entire community to take the school from strength to strength. For now, may I commend the staff and pupils at Kingsley School for making me feel so welcome, my wife and I are greatly looking forward to Bideford becoming our new home.”