Dear Headteacher Colleague
I wanted to take the opportunity to introduce myself before the Summer holidays. My name is Mark Douglas and I took up the post of the Strategic Director of Bradford Children’s Services on 1st July. In the 2 weeks I have been in post, I have
received a very warm welcome and have had the chance to meet some of the staff since my arrival. I know I’m joining Children’s Services at a challenging time but I know that we are all committed to rising to that challenge and continuing to strive to deliver
good and outstanding services for the children of Bradford. Improving our social care services is one of the biggest challenges the Council faces and it will take a huge amount of hard work, effort and determination to achieve this goal. I have recently left
my role with Doncaster Children’s Trust who have been on a similar journey and have recently successfully come through the other side. I am confident that Bradford will achieve the same and I am committed to making this happen.
Due to the timing of my arrival, I have only had the opportunity to meet a small number of Headteachers during meetings that I have attended. However, from what I have seen and heard already, I know we have many dedicated talented school leaders who are
committed to making a difference to the lives of the children and families who cross their paths. I am looking forward to visiting your schools in the new academic year as well as attend headteacher partnership and network meetings wherever possible. I see
schools as central in helping us to improve services for children and young people in the District and I recognise the critical role that you have in shaping the future for our aspiration to be a child friendly District..
As I know you will appreciate, much of our energy at the moment is inevitably focused on our Ofsted improvement journey. But I am determined that we also build on the many exciting and successful initiatives and projects that are happening across our schools
and academies. I want to make sure that we do not lose focus on these as it is important that we celebrate this innovation and the good work that is going on as we develop new ways of working.
I am very excited about the potential that Bradford has, and as Britain’s youngest city, I believe that Children’s Services, in close partnership with Schools, will see that potential flourish as we achieve our ambition to become a “Child Friendly District”.
I look forward to meeting you in the coming year and please accept my thanks for your work and commitment to the children of Bradford.
Wishing you a restful and enjoyable summer break.
With kind regards