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THE top job at the troubled Basildon Academies is being advertised with a six-figure salary.

The school, which is in special measures, is advertising for a new principal in the Times Educational Supplement promising a “competitive six figure salary and benefits”.

The ad has been placed with the help of external agency, Pentir Talent Solutions, a London based firm.

The school is looking for a permanant head since Dr Rory Fox quit the academies in October following a row with school governors over a new maths and English curriculum.

The ad says the school has the “support of our sponsor Martin Finegold” and serves “an area of significant deprivation”. It admits “educational standards have not been good for a number of years” but points out its recent GCSE success where results rose from from 31 per cent of pupils achieving 5 A* to C grades in 2011 to 45 per cent in 2012.

Tim Coulson, head of education at Essex County Council, welcomed the approach the school was taking.

He said: “I would say this is a sensible move by the academies. It is a very big job and they want the best person. It is not totally the norm for heads to be given six figures salaries but they want a strong leader and therefore an attractive wage.”

Mike Phillips, Managing Director of Pentir, confirmed the academies had approached the firm to help them find a head but said the governors would still make the final decision.

Les Livermore, chairman of governors at the school, said: “It is common practice for educational organisations to commission an external agency in order to recruit the highest calibre of candidates for important leadership positions within schools and academies. There will be a short listing process which will then come to the governing body for final appointment."

The closing date for applicants is Monday, March 4.