Former Swindon Academy Principal receives Lifetime Achievement Award

By Jamie Hill - 29 June 2023


There were resounding cheers in Birmingham Botanical Gardens last Friday night as Ruth Robinson, who served as Principal of Swindon Academy until February of this year, was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award. Ruth, who is due to retire next month, was recognised at United Learning’s Best in Everyone Awards.

  • Sir Jon Coles and Ruth Robinson

    Sir Jon Coles and Ruth Robinson

The annual awards celebrate students and staff from across United Learning for their exceptional contributions to school and community life.  This includes recognition of academic success, accomplishment in sport, music and the arts and dedication to leadership and service.  Individuals and teams from across the Group were nominated by their schools with the winners decided by a panel of judges. 

Ruth had been nominated by her colleagues at Swindon Academy where she was Principal for over ten years.  Nominating Ruth, her colleagues said that Ruth has been on a ‘crusade’ to drive standards of education’ to deliver long-term positive benefits to students.  Ruth was said to be dedicated to ‘raising students’ expectations of themselves’ so that they follow their dreams and ambitions. Under Ruth’s leadership, Swindon Academy was judged ‘Good’ by Ofsted with inspectors recognising how ambitious Ruth was for students and how focused she was on their safety and wellbeing.  Ruth was pivotal in raising standards and last summer the academy was the top school in Swindon for GCSE progress and attainment. Ruth played a key role in brokering a partnership with Marlborough College which seeks to provide the academy’s students with enrichment opportunities that might not otherwise be available to them. 

She was also Executive Principal of United Learning’s Nova Hreod Academy helping to raise standards in all areas.  Before joining Swindon Academy, Ruth was Principal of United Learning’s North Oxfordshire Academy.  Prior to that, she led the International School and Community College (East Birmingham) transforming the quality of education provided there. 

Accepting her award, Ruth said: 

“It was a wonderful surprise to be nominated and receive this lifetime award.  It has been a huge privilege to lead Swindon Academy and serve the communities of Penhill and Pinehurst for the past 11 years.  I have loved watching our pupils flourish and achieve under the care of an incredible senior leadership team, dedicated teachers and committed support staff.  I will take away many happy and fond memories of my time as Principal of Swindon Academy with me into my retirement. I would like to wish the pupils and staff all the very best for the future.” 

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