Highland Council appoints Executive Chief Officer

Paul Senior has been appointed by The Highland Council as interim Executive Chief Officer for Education and Learning.

Cllr John Finlayson, Education Committee Chair welcomed Mr Senior’s appointment, he said: “I am pleased to announce that Paul Senior will be joining us following the completion of his education services management role with Hackney Council in London and will be working with Highland Council from the end of May.”

Mr Senior brings considerable experience to this post; as an interim local government director and consultant he has operated frequently in recent years as the Director of Education, Children's and / or Adult Services for several English unitary, borough, city and county councils; and has worked as an Inspector for OFSTED inspecting schools and local authorities.  He also has extensive experience working with elected Members and has been an advisor to National Government.

Paul commented: “I’m looking forward to joining Highland Council at such a crucial time and to working closely with our local area Head Teachers, partners and education system leaders. The Highland education system and all supporting parts such as our schools and settings have a lot of good practice to be recognised and celebrated, but also the data and results tells us that we have scope for improvement. There is a real strength of collaboration and partnership working across the Highland region in the work of education that is tangible, which provides a tremendous platform for us to collectively make progress. I’m passionate about improving outcomes for children and young people through the work of education and will aim to bring this passion, along with experience and learning from my previous roles to the Highland area to work with our partners, schools and settings to help make Highland one of the best places in Scotland for children and young people to learn and develop.”    

Cllr Finlayson added: “I look forward to working with Paul and welcoming him to The Highland Council and given the most recent updates from the Scottish Government about the return of pupils to school in August, Paul’s experience will be essential in developing how Highland schools approach the return to school in a way that supports the blended model of learning that schools will be following.”

Paul Senior joins the Council’s already appointed Executive Chief Officers as follows:

  • Carron McDiarmid, Executive Chief Officer – Communities and Place
  • Kate Lackie, Executive Chief Officer – Performance and Governance
  • Lesley Weber, Executive Chief Officer - Health and Social Care.
  • Liz Denovan, Executive Chief Officer – Resources and Finance
  • Malcolm MacLeod, Executive Chief Officer - Infrastructure and Environment
  • Mark Rodgers - Executive Chief Officer - Property and Housing
  • Allan Gunn, Interim Executive Chief Officer - Transformation and Economy.
22 May 2020
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