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Longstanding Cambridgeshire school leader takes a step back after 41 years of dedication

Longstanding Cambridgeshire school leader takes a step back after 41 years of dedication

A popular education leader who has been working with schools across Cambridgeshire over the last 41 years is set to take a step back at the end of this school year. 

Prue Rayner, who has been Anglian Learning’s Director of Primary Education since 2017, has contributed tirelessly to the Trust, its schools, and other schools across the region during her career.  

Not only has she made an impact on a local level, Prue also received a Bronze Award of Lifetime Achievement from Pearson National Teaching Awards for her commitment and passion for changing the lives of many young people. 

Inspired by her own teachers in secondary school and sixth form, Prue followed her ambitions of working in education. Her first teaching role was at Milton Road Infant School when she taught a class of 32 reception children to read daily. 

After falling in love with a career that saw Prue lead primary schools as a Deputy Headteacher and Headteacher where she built communities, and helped children to reach their potential, she went on to achieve a Master’s Degree in Education awarded by Trinity Hall through the Institute of Education in Cambridge. There, she worked with Professor Michael Fielding and Professor Emeritus of Educational Leadership, John MacBeath, to write a thesis on the impact of pupil voice on learning and school improvement. 

For a while, she worked with the School Inspection Team in Nottinghamshire where she learned how to stay determined in the face of significant adversity. Following this, she worked within the School Improvement Team for the local authority in Cambridgeshire and as a Senior HM Inspector at Ofsted. 

Prue said: “Over the past 41 years, my real joy has always been found in classrooms, but also in the people I have worked with. They have filled my life with inspiration, learning and richness beyond compare. 

“I love my work. Every day brings joy, even when it is challenging because it’s about giving children and young people the best life chances they can have. 

“Yes, it’s hard to leave a career you love, but I know it’s the right time, time to reflect, read and perhaps become a greater voice for all that I believe is right in education. I will certainly still be involved in schools and education in some way in the future.” 

Jonathan Culpin, CEO of Anglian Learning, said: “It has been a pleasure to work with Prue, and her legacy will continue to inspire and guide us as we move forward.  

“Her work has undoubtedly made a significant impact on the lives of thousands of young people during her career.  

“Her profound understanding, tireless efforts and deep compassion for children, colleagues, and the schools she works in have been instrumental in shaping the educational landscape within our Trust, creating a nurturing environment where pupils thrive.” 



Anglian Learning
Bottisham Village College
Lode Rd, Cambridge
CB25 9DL, United Kingdom


01223 340340

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