George McMillan
Principal and Facilitator

Background

George has been the Principal of Harris Academy Greenwich since January 2011 and is a National Leader of Education (NLE). Originally from Glasgow, he graduated from Aberdeen University with an MA in English Literature, and then from Edinburgh University with a PGCE and a burning desire to teach. He taught English for six years at a secondary school in Edinburgh serving one of the most deprived areas in Scotland, latterly having a whole school remit in charge of promoting positive behaviour. Shortly after moving to London in 2006 he met Dr Tomlinson and joined the Senior Team at Harris Academy Chafford Hundred which at the time was in a ‘Requires Improvement’ category and is now Outstanding in every category. George has a diploma in Educational Leadership, the NPQH and he’s also a Senior Practitioner with the European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC). His love for teaching shows as he still teaches English every week and he is fiercely proud of the students and staff that he leads.

Role within Harris Federation

When George became the Principal of Harris Academy Greenwich in January 2011 the school was in Special Measures and was inadequate in nearly 30 areas under the old Ofsted framework. The school roll had been falling for a number of years and behaviour was extremely poor, with violence and gross defiance endemic. The school came out of Special Measures in 5 terms and then converted to join the Harris Federation. Two years after that they were awarded Outstanding in every category in July 2014.  Our results went from 28% 5ACEM to 49% to 73% to 85% in the first three years.

Key achievements

The national context has changed so much with massive pressures in curriculum change and assessment which has affected disadvantaged pupils disproportionately. With this said George is happy to have won the Pupil Premium Award from the DfE placing them in the top 4% of schools in the country for Value Added.

He is also really proud of the culture of ‘high rapport high challenge’ they have built in the Academy, particularly over the last two years. Morale is high and there is a great atmosphere amongst the staff. Furthermore he aims to recruit staff who buy into the schools vision and ensure that they nurture and challenge staff in a way that creates energy and dynamism for all.

Harris facilitator

George trains staff on the NPQML, NPQSL and NPQH leadership programmes, covering modules such as coaching and feedback, vision and values, inclusion and behaviour.

He loves having the opportunity to have a real influence in developing and inspiring staff to be better than they ever thought possible.