ESSA Academy has appointed the deputy headteacher as principal after the sudden departure of Showk Badat in December last year.

The day-to-day running of the 811-strong school was taken over by deputy headteacher, Jeff Ellis, who it has now been announced will lead the academy permanently.

Mr Ellis, who was also the deputy at Essa Academy’s predeccesor, Hayward School, said: “I am delighted and honoured to take up the position of principal at Essa Academy.

“Our mission is ‘All will Succeed’ and I will ensure, together with all my team at Essa Academy, that we will provide educational excellence to ensure all our children reach their full potential and beyond.”

Mr Ellis joined Essa Academy — Bolton first sponsored academy — in January 2009 as vice principal before being promoted to deputy principal.

He has been teaching for more than 25 years, starting his career as a maths teacher.

Essa Foundation Academies Trust said Mr Ellis was “instrumental” in bringing about transformational changes during the school’s transition to an academy.

The chairman of governors at Essa Academy, Anwer Patel said: “We are delighted Mr Ellis has taken up the position of principal at Essa Academy after going through a very intensive recruitment process.

“With his experience and leadership he will no doubt help us to achieve our mission ‘All will succeed’ and deliver outstanding education to all our children.”

The academy in Great Lever is sponsored by the Patel brothers, the entrepreneurs behind Cohens Chemist along with Bolton Council.

It opened in a storm of protest in 2009.

Since the poorly performing Hayward School was shut down, standards have risen and children are educated in a new £9 million state-of-the art new school building.

A primary school will open in September, under the government’s flagship free school programme, transforming Essa into a "super school".

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