Robert Benson, head teacher at Dover Grammar School for Girls, was guest speaker at Dover Rotary Club recently when he highlighted the pressures facing members of the teaching profession. This was reflected in the great difficulty in recruiting staff.
Mr Benson, responsible for the education of 890 young people from Dover and Deal, has a teaching staff of 60 and just over 100 overall. Although a girls’ school there are 30 boys in the mixed sixth form.
One surprising fact was that although he had been in post only two and a half years (he arrived in 2016) he was one of the longest serving head teachers in Dover. He told that he was educated in a boys’ school but that this was the third girls’ school in which he had worked.
He submitted that his girls’ school was greatly under-resourced, still with five mobile blocks and an absence of other amenities including those for sport. Yet, he added, there were proposals to completely rebuild Dover Grammar School for Boys (at Astor Avenue).
He thanked the Rotarians for their support for the school including the introduction of the successful Interact club and for the valuable prize given annually to a selected student.