LLANIDLOES High School’s newly appointed headteacher started work on Monday.

Daniel Owen joins Llanidloes High School having spent the past three years supporting headteachers from across the ERW region as a Challenge Adviser and as an Estyn inspector.

Mr Owen said: “It is such a privilege to be joining one of the highest performing secondary schools in Wales. The progress pupils make from the time they arrive at the school to the time they leave is outstanding. For example, in 2017, A-level results place the Sixth Form in The Times top 10 in Wales.

“It is little wonder that the vibrant Sixth Form is growing, with increasing numbers of students travelling from far and wide to access the caring, close-knit and supportive learning environment.”

Mr Owen graduated from Oxford University in 1996 with a joint honours degree in politics, philosophy and economics (PPE). After graduating he took a gap year to explore India and the Himalayas in Nepal, before returning to the UK to teach.

He and his wife, Sharon, have six children, and their family has strong links to the Llanidloes area. His father-in-law, Frank Clifford Jones, was one of the first pupils to study at the current school site when it opened.

Mr Owen said: “My father-in-law was thrilled to hear that I would be working at his old school and has shared a great many fond memories of his time at the school back in the 1950s.”

Mr Owen added: “It is no secret that there is a funding crisis in secondary education in Powys. Many secondary schools carry budget deficits despite having already increased class sizes and reduced staffing. Our secondary schools have suffered from significant real terms cuts to their budgets for several successive years. We now have among the lowest funded secondary schools in the UK. I look forward to working closely with colleagues from the local authority who are working hard to address this significant issue.”

However, Mr Owen is encouraged that Llanidloes High School is enjoying a time of increasing pupil numbers.

“The school is well-deserving of its splendid reputation and I look forward to building on such a solid foundation.”