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Voices from the Field: Matthew O’Brien

Matthew O’Brien

Headteacher Birchgrove Primary School

Matthew O’Brien started teaching in 1999 and has gained a thorough knowledge of the Primary Curriculum and has experience teaching across the age ranges from Reception to Year 6 and in a Special Teaching Facility.

During his career, he progressed from class teacher with curriculum responsibilities to two deputy headships, and in 2008 was seconded by the Local Authority as acting headteacher. In 2009, he was appointed headteacher of a Junior school and soon after successfully amalgamated the Infant and the Junior schools.

He has been headteacher of Birchgrove Primary School since November 2013; a school that nurtures children’s natural curiosity, and develops happy, confident learners.

Facilitating the Professional Learning of staff is central to Matthew’s philosophy. All staff at Birchgrove Primary School successfully understand the school’s vision and as a result, they work together as a community. Over time, the school has successfully brought about significant improvements and sustains these in a meaningful way. Much of this has been achieved by supporting the professional learning of the staff and strengthening collaboration with parents and the wider community.

Part of the National Academy for Educational Leadership Wales’ Leading from the Middle: Middle Leaders in Wales conference 30 March 2023.