The Times is reporting an analysis of the qualifications of leading head teachers which suggests English Literature and History degrees are the most common.
The analysis has been conducted by The Good Schools Guide and looks at the university degrees held by the heads of 800 schools it features. Most of these are private schools, but 20 per cent are from the state sector.
The subjects that came out top were English literature at 16.5% and history at 15.7%. Way back in third was maths at 7.6%. The top science was chemistry at just 3.7%, physics 2.7% and biology 1.4%.
In trying to understand why history seems to outperform so strongly, the paper interviewed John Moule, the warden of Radley College:
“It would be nice to think that my degree conferred a natural gravitas as I daily apply my knowledge of the ‘bank and capital of ages’ [Burke]. Sadly, the truth is more prosaic: I can write under pressure, I can sift through vast amounts of tedious material and spot something useful and, above all, pretend to know stuff about things I only have a hazy awareness of . . . and get away with it. History has taught me to bluff impressively.”
More at: Why historians make the best school leaders (subscription may be required)
I’m not sure that the characterisation of these heads as the ‘leading’ heads is entirely fair, but leaving that aside, do you think there is any significance in these findings?
Would they be any different in the wider state sector?
And should we be concerned that so few mathematicians and scientists are leading our schools?
Please let us know what you think in the comments or via Twitter…
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