A NEW head has been appointed to run the Basildon Academies from September.

Doug Lawson, whose Kent school is recognised as one of the most improved in the country, will take over from executive principal Bev Bell on September 1.

Ms Bell will remain for a transitional period until December.

Both Basildon Academies have been on the up after Ofsted told them they needed to improve.

In October last year, Ofsted said the Lower and Upper Academies’ achievement was better but still needed to improve.

At that time, both moved from being rated as “inadequate” to “requires improvement”.

Mr Lawson said: “I’m proud to be joining the Basildon Academies from September and am confident I can build upon the rapid improvements made over the past 18 months, establishing a sustainable model for academic success and rigour.

“I am committed to ensuring the academies achieve a ‘good’ rating, with ‘outstanding’ features by the time of the next inspection and look forward to working with the impressive governing body, dedicated staff, talented pupils and supportive parents to achieve this.”