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Schools Inspector Expelled

Schools Inspector Expelled.

The new Welsh chief inspector for schools has admitted being expelled from school at 16 – for spiking his teachers’ cornflake cakes with laxatives.

Owen Evans is to become the new head of Estyn, the Welsh equivalent to Ofsted, whose job is to raise educational standards in classrooms across the country. He takes up his new role as head of Estyn in the new year.

The 52-year-old’s appointment is a far cry from his rebellious past, which included an expulsion from secondary school Ysgol Gyfun Gymunedol Penweddig in Aberystwyth for giving teachers doctored cakes. In an interview with the Western Mail earlier this year, he said the incident led to 23 out of 40 teachers missing lessons the next day.

He said that attempts to discipline him by his father were shaken off like “water off a duck’s back”, but that the “look of disappointment in my mother’s eyes” caused him to turn his life around. “Getting expelled was a massive kick up the bottom,” he said.

Mr Evans said his decision to join a further education college to finish his studies became “the making of me. If I didn’t turn up, the teacher would ring my house and ask where I was and then pick me up. It was partly the shame of being picked up that meant I started going”. He then enrolled at Swansea University to study economics. following his graduation, Mr Evans briefly worked as a shepherd, then worked for BT for 10 years developing the company’s broadband strategy before he joined the Civil Service.

Mr Evans was appointed Welsh director-general for education and skills in 2013, which saw him immediately tasked with managing the merging of Welsh universities. He was credited with raising educational standards across Wales by 20 per cent in a year after he identified a list of schools in need of priority assistance, branded the “naughty 40”.

In Oct 2017, Mr Evans was appointed chief executive of S4C, a Welsh language television channel, His departure from that role was confirmed this week after his appointment as the new HM Chief Inspector of Education and Training in Wales was confirmed. He takes up his new post in January, replacing Meilyr Rowlands who is retiring next month.

in News