The education community is in shock and sadness after the death of Ruth Perry, a headteacher at Caversham Primary School in Reading, Berkshire, England. Perry, who had dedicated 32 years of her life to the education sector and had been a headteacher at the school for 13 years, took her own life in January 2023.
Continue reading to know more about Ruth Perry’s life, career, why she died and the impact she left on family, friends, and loved ones.
Who was Ruth Perry? Know more about her
Ruth Perry was an accomplished teacher who devoted more than three decades of her life to the field of education. Over the course of her 13 years as headteacher at Caversham Primary School in Reading, the institution twice obtained an outstanding rating. Perry was admired by her family and coworkers for being a kind and kind individual with a contagious passion for education. Her dedication to raising the school’s performance and establishing a friendly and encouraging learning environment for her students was a testament to her love of education. Perry’s devotion to her work, however, tragically changed when she started to worry more and more about the results of an Ofsted inspection that was conducted in November 2022.
Why did Ruth Perry commit suicide?
Perry took her own life in January 2023, shortly after an Ofsted inspection that rated the school as “inadequate.” The inspection was conducted on November 15 and 16, and according to Perry’s sister, Julia Waters, staff were informed on the first day of the inspection that the school’s rating would drop from “outstanding” to “inadequate.” In feedback to the senior leadership team, inspectors cited a boy’s dance move as evidence of the sexualisation of children at the school and made claims of child-on-child abuse, which turned out to be a playground fight. Perry felt a sense of injustice and was anxious about the publication of the report. Her sister recalled that Perry would often talk about the countdown to the report’s publication and how every day weighed heavily on her.
In the Ofsted report, the school was described as “welcoming and vibrant,” and relationships between staff and pupils were noted as “warm and supportive.” However, the report found weaknesses in the school’s understanding of safeguarding requirements and procedures, as well as inadequate supervision during break times, which put pupils at risk of harm. Perry’s family received a letter from the director of education for Reading, acknowledging the school’s quality and effective educational environment and stating that Perry’s leadership was not accurately represented by the “inadequate” rating.
As many now know, Ruth Perry, sister of my friend Professor Julia Waters took her own life following the brutality of an Ofsted inspection at the Caversham Primary School of which she was headteacher.— Alison Wright PR (@alisonwrightpr) March 18, 2023
This must never happen again. I stand with Julia in the following:
Tributes pour in for Ruth Perry
Alison Wright, a PR professional, posted on Twitter that it has been revealed that Ruth Perry, the sister of her friend Professor Julia Waters, committed suicide after an Ofsted inspection at the Caversham Primary School, where she worked as a headteacher. Wright expressed her sorrow and emphasized that such a tragic event should not occur again. She also showed her support for Julia during this difficult time.
Caroline Gratrix expressed her condolences over the death of Ruth Perry, the headteacher of Caversham Primary School, and the sister of Julia Waters. She called Ruth an amazing headteacher who cared deeply for the children and families in her community. Caroline also praised Julia for speaking out about the impact of the Ofsted inspection on Ruth, which ultimately led to her taking her own life. She expressed hope that Julia’s bravery in speaking out will lead to change and that Ruth’s legacy as a force for good will continue.
The passing of Ruth Perry has deeply impacted numerous individuals, and her absence will be acutely felt. Our condolences and support go out to her loved ones, associates, and the community during this challenging time.
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Who is Ruth Perry?
Ruth Perry was the headteacher at Caversham Primary School in Reading for 13 years and dedicated 32 years of her life to the education sector.
Why did Ruth Perry commit suicide?
Ruth Perry committed suicide after an Ofsted inspection gave her school an “inadequate” rating, causing her to feel a sense of injustice and anxiety.