Five years of Theale Green School being part of the Activate Learning Education Trust was celebrated on Tuesday 18 July with afternoon tea for staff and special guests.

ALET CEO Jo Harper hands out long-service awards

As well as showcasing the incredible journey the school has been on in the last five years, the event was the perfect occasion to celebrate the long service of many staff.

It was also a celebration of the leadership of the school’s amazing Executive Principal Joanna Halliday, who is leaving TGS to develop school leaders through coaching as the next stage in her career.

Executive Principal Joanna Halliday

Jo has been at Theale Green since 2018, leading the school to its first Good rating from Ofsted in over a decade in 2022.  The impact of her time at the school, and her leadership through challenges including COVID, cannot be understated. She has done it all with warmness, compassion and good humour.

So as you can imagine, more than few tears were shed yesterday, but they were happy ones, not sad thanks to some hilarious memories and even a specially written song…

The special hat

Many personal moments were shared by the staff in video messages – the best being an unexpected focus on dishwashers, Diet Coke and the crazy leadership team special hat…

The moment when long-standing staff members decided this new head ‘was a keeper’ (after dishing out sloe gin and mince pies from the back of her car on a freezing December morning before a staff Christmas trip out) was especially amusing!

A song for Jo

The show was comprehensively stolen however by the Drama department singing a wonderfully tuneful and emphatically delivered song, written just for Jo. New school anthem maybe?

Jo herself shared some of her best moments – including the lovely nugget that her husband had attended TGS as a boy!

A PE trophy is Jo’s leaving gift

As a final legacy of her time at the school, Jo gifted a trophy to the PE department which she would like to be presented each year in the future to the child who showed the best leadership within PE.

TGS is not saying goodbye to Jo completely however, as she will be taking up a role dedicated to the development of  Activate Learning Education Trust’s leaders.

We thank Jo for her dedication to the students and families of Theale Green and we wish her the very best in her next adventure.

Going forward

  • Charlotte Badarello will continue in her role as Head of School, with a new Deputy Headteacher joining in September. Charlotte will be supported by Mark Blackman, who joined the Trust in April in the role of Director of Secondary Education.