Free school headmistress with no qualifications quits after four weeks

27-year old Annaliese Briggs resigns her position in charge of Pimlico Primary after a month

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The Independent Online

The 27-year old headteacher of a London free school who was recruited from a right wing think tank has resigned after four weeks in the position.

Parents at the Pimlico Primary were told that Annaliese Briggs, who had no teaching qualifications before starting the job, had decided “to pursue other opportunities within primary education”, but would continue supporting the school as a governer.

In a statement, the school said a teacher with “over ten years experience” would fill the role.

Pimlico Primary, which opened just a mile from the Houses of Parliament in September, is sponsored by Future Academies - the charity run by junior school minister and close ally to Michael Gove, Lord Nash.

In April Ms Briggs defended being offered the position without any experience saying, “it’s a very pragmatic appointment and I’ve been recruited because of my expertise with the curriculum”.

Education Secretary Michael Gove has led the the move to implement more unqualified teachers in schools, giving the country’s 1,500 academies the leeway to do so from 2011.

In 2012 the Department for Education said the additional flexibility would “help schools improve faster”.

Labour previously described the appointment of the 27-year old Briggs at Pimlico Primary as “staggering”,  and have wasted no time in commenting on her resignation.

Paul Dimoldenberg, Leader of the Labour group at Westminster Council Councillor said of the 27-year old English graduate: “Being the head of an inner-London school is a tough job which can sometimes be very stressful.

He added: ”By appointing someone with no teaching experience or experience in running a school, the Pimlico academy governors might now consider that this is a decision they now regret.”