THE Trust which runs a failing Bournemouth secondary school has announced that its CEO is retiring – 24 hours after the publication of a damning Ofsted report.

Avonbourne Trust says that Debbie Godfrey-Phaure, who has been off work since January for what are described as health reasons, ‘made a decision at the beginning of this academic year that she would retire at the end of the summer term.’

“Trustees and the Principals were notified of this in the autumn and have been ‘succession planning to ensure a smooth transition,” claimed the Trust.

“Due to health reasons and following medical advice, Ms Godfrey-Phaure’s retirement date has been brought forward to April," it said. "In her absence and after the Easter holidays, the Trust will be jointly led by Adam Coshan and Jason Holbrook – the principals of Harewood and Avonbourne colleges.”

Harewood College is the boys’ school which was rated as Inadequate in almost every area in a shock Ofsted report which was published this week.

Lead inspector Sarah McGinnis said: “Pupils say that bullying and intimidating behaviour are prevalent. They dislike being shoved in the corridors and some pupils say they do not like moving around the school site on their own.”

The report said trust leaders and governors have failed to ensure that pupils receive an acceptable standard of education.

“Outcomes for pupils are poor,” it said. “Over the last three years the progress pupils make by the end of Year 11 has been significantly below the national average.

“Safeguarding is weak. Too many pupils say they feel unsafe at school. Absence and persistent absence rates are above the national average, particularly for disadvantaged pupils and pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities.”

The school has 527 pupils between the ages of 11 and 16 and this week’s report is all the more shocking as the school was rated ‘Good’ following its 2015 inspection.

The Trust praised Ms Godfrey-Phaure for her ‘14 years’ service’ first as headteacher of Avonbourne College and then as executive headteacher and finally as CEO.

“In those years we have seen very many successes, including the winning of national enterprise awards and the opening of a new sixth form and primary school,” it said.

“The Trust would like to thank Ms Godfrey-Phaure for her long service and we know she leaves the Trust in very good hands.”