Mystery over former Colyton woman's top job

PUBLISHED: 06:53 21 January 2009 | UPDATED: 22:55 15 June 2010

A WELL-KNOWN former Colyton woman has been dropped as the new headmistress of a prestigious girls' school shortly before she was due to take up the post.

A WELL-KNOWN former Colyton woman has been dropped as the new headmistress of a prestigious girls' school shortly before she was due to take up the post.Susan Gunn-Johnson, deputy head of Churston Ferrers Grammar School, in Brixham, was offered the job at St George's School for Girls, Edinburgh, where pupils are educated at the cost of around £10,000 a year.Mrs Gunn-Johnson, who lived with her husband the Venerable David Gunn-Johnson in Colyton for 15 years, made a short visit to the school in preparation for her new role - when the governing body had second thoughts about her appointment.It has been widely reported in Scotland that the change of heart could cost the school financially, amid allegations that Mrs Gunn-Johnson will sue for compensation.The position of head teacher was reported to have a salary of around £100,000 a year. But, earlier this month, the school said it decided Mrs Gunn-Johnson would not be taking up her post and the current deputy head is filling the role for a year.Scotland on Sunday reported the decision could have been based on Mrs Gunn-Johnson's dress sense, which was not appreciated by some of the more staid parents and staff at St George's when she visited.But a Colyton resident, who did not wish to be named, said: "I never found her to be inappropriately dressed and I can't understand why somebody shouldn't get a job on such a basis anyway."She was considered a pillar of the community and highly respected."Robert Owers, headteacher of Gunn-Johnson's current school, was quoted as saying: "She is an outstanding deputy head teacher and I have no doubt that she will be an outstanding head teacher."Mr Gunn-Johnson told the Herald that he and his wife had been advised not to comment.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Midweek Herald. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Midweek Herald