New Aylesbury Grammar School headmaster says there’s no room for complacency

Mark Sturgeon
Mark Sturgeon

Aylesbury Grammar School’s new headmaster says that he will work hard to make sure his pupils do not rest on their laurels.

Mark Sturgeon, 42, who took over from outgoing head Stephen Lehec on September 1, says that while the school is already excellent, he wants to make sure that every single boy who walks through its doors gets the most out of the experience.

He said: “My intentions are for this to be a 21st century grammar school, and a school that prepares the boys for the 21st century.

“This is not about abandoning the traditional curriculum, it’s about building on it.

“It’s important that we celebrate what’s happened in the past and celebrate the successes of the students but we have not got to be complacent.

“We should never take for granted that results are going to be good. Education is more than just the results the boys get.

“Results open the road to the next stage of their careers but alongside that they have to develop a learning character that will help them in the real world.”

He added: “I want to make sure that the boys’ aspirations are very high and that they are always working just beyond their comfort zone.

“I don’t want them to rest on their laurels because they are at a good school, I want them to continuously push themselves to achieve more than they ever thought possible.’

Mr Sturgeon lives in Aylesbury with his wife Angie and their sons Ted, nine, Stanley aged seven and Hugo four.

He attended Dr Challoner’s Grammar School in 
Amersham and after university travelled to the USA to coach children’s football sides.

Upon his return in 1995 he studied for his teaching qualifications in London, before returning to Bucks to start his first job at Burnham Upper School.

A job at Aylesbury Grammar School as head of geography soon followed and Mr Sturgeon worked there for seven years, before taking up his last post at Lord Challoner’s where he was promoted to deputy head in 2009.

On returning to Aylesbury as headmaster Mr Sturgeon said: “I am an old boy of Dr Challoner’s and I got the same thing there.

“This is very different because I am in a totally different role .

“The school has changed a lot physically but ultimately at its heart the school is still the same, the values and the ethos of this school is part of its DNA.”

And Mr Sturgeon, who is chairman of the Bucks Schools Football Association, and secretary of the South East England Schools Football Association, said that he is going to be working hard to bring in much needed upgrades to school buildings.

He said: “We are currently looking at a plan to improve the buildings that we have.

“We are on a site where we have some 100 year old buildings and some new buildings and it’s about improving that to create the very best learning environment for the boys.”