Popular Worthing head teacher leaving at the end of term will be 'sorely missed'

A Worthing head teacher who is leaving at the end of term has said it took a lot to tear him away from his school.

Jez Wong, who has been at Broadwater CE Primary School for 11 years, is going to work at a school in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Jez Wong and his wife Kirsty are leaving at the end of term. Photo by Steve Robards

Jez Wong and his wife Kirsty are leaving at the end of term. Photo by Steve Robards

He said: “I will be very sad to leave here but I know the school is in safe hands. It has been amazing here. I love this school and its ethos and what it stands for. It took a lot to tear me away.”

In his time at the school, in Rectory Gardens, Mr Wong has led it through two Ofsted inspections, where it was rated ‘outstanding’ each time. But he said this was all down to the hard work from the children and the dedication of staff and governors.

In Rio, he will take over as head of the 800-pupil The British School, where hopes to bring Broadwater’s mission and ethos of ‘love to learn’ to them.

He said “I am excited about the opportunity and bringing my ethos to a new place – and I am seeking to make a difference in another country, in another environment.

Jez Wong and his wife Kirsty with pupils at Broadwater CE Primary School in Worthing. Photo by Steve Robards

Jez Wong and his wife Kirsty with pupils at Broadwater CE Primary School in Worthing. Photo by Steve Robards

“I love the fact that every day is different. And I love the face that you are actually making a difference, which sounds clichéd, but it is a cliché that all good teachers use. If you are not wanting to make a difference, you shouldn’t be teaching.”

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Mr Wong’s wife Kirsty, a reception teacher at the school, is joining him on the new venture and is ‘equally excited’. She, too, has secured a position at The British School in Rio and will be teaching year-three pupils.

The couple, who have been married for 30 years and have two children, have never not worked at the same school.

Mr Wong said when he and Mrs Wong visited The British School in Rio, it ‘felt like home’ after hearing pupils singing a song they sing in Broadwater during an assembly.

Liz Crockett, chairman of governors at Broadwater, said: “Jez has been the most wonderful example of commitment, enthusiasm and energy in everything he undertakes at our school.

“He has always shown a real passion to ensure that our pupils are given the very best education and he will be sorely missed by them, the staff, governors and parents.

“We all wish Kirsty and Jez every success and happiness in their new school in Rio de Janeiro.”

Current deputy head teacher Natasha Simpson will take the reins as acting head teacher from September.