Highest paid head teacher is replaced at city academy

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Alastair Falk, who earned more than £120,000 a year, left West London Academy, in Ealing, west London. He was moved by the school's sponsor, Alec Reed, the multimillionaire founder and chairman of Reed Executive Recruitment, to an administrative position in an education foundation. The action "took effect immediately".

Mr Falk, whose leadership style was criticised by Ofsted this summer, will be director of the Academy of Enterprise, an organisation founded in 2000 by Mr Reed to promote the teaching of enterprise in the UK.

He has been replaced by Hilary Macaulay, who was previously vice-principal at the ADT City Technology College in Wandsworth, a successful secondary school sponsored by an alarm company.

Mr Reed, who is professor of innovation at London's Royal Holloway University, said that Mr Falk had done a good job in setting up the academy but that the move had been planned "for some time" to secure the school's improvement. He said of the school: "We are immensely proud of what has been achieved already, and we have many more goals to reach."

Mr Falk's departure is the latest blow to hit the Government's flagship academy programme.

It also follows a series of setbacks for the West London Academy. In July, Ofsted delivered a damning report on the school, which singled out Mr Falk's leadership for criticism.

In August the school was forced to admit that its GCSE results had worsened since it became an academy. In September pupils missed a week's lessons after the £37m new buildings were declared unfit for use.

Mr Falk described his new job as "another huge challenge" which he was "delighted to face".