New principal of Isle of Dogs school shares her educational experiences
Passion to foster the educational success of youngsters is a professional - and personal - mission for Jill Baker.
The new principal at George Green's School, on the Isle of Dogs, took over the helm just three weeks ago after former headteacher Kenny Frederick announced her retirement before the summer break.
The 54-year-old, who spent much of her teaching career in east London, said it was experiences during her own school days that spurred her into doing "everything in her means" to ensure youngsters were successful in the educational system.
"I failed my 11 plus at school and I was treated like a failure for much of my school time," she said.
"It was only when I met a teacher that inspired me to do well that I did my O-levels and went to university.
"I am really passionate that students should experience success at school and we should do everything in our remit to do the best we can for students.
"It's not about going the extra mile - it's about going the extra 10 or 20 miles.
"I don't want any students to have to feel what I felt, which was a complete failure most of the time.
"In the first assembly with the George Green's students I told them I was probably not the best example originally, but I made a success of it."
In addition to inspiring students for success, the former deputy head at Dagenham's Jo Richardson Community School has already begun to put her stamp on her new Manchester Road home.
She said she wanted to keep the successes of the school while adding her own changes - the most immediate being a ban on chewing gun and fizzy drinks to encourage students to respect their newly-refurbished surroundings.
Another priority is to build on the stepping stone of a "Good" Oftsted rating - granted earlier this year - to make George Green's an "Outstanding" school within the next four years.
But Ms Baker admitted there was a continuity as well with the new principal sharing the need to promote a "lovely community feel of the school" with her predecessor. "George Green's is my kind of place," said Ms Baker. "I knew Kenny, and I knew the kind of school she would run. I knew it would be the kind of school I wanted to run.
"We both have a real passion about inclusion and educating the whole child - it's not just about exam results, we are not an exam factory.
"It's really important every child has a good local school to go to no matter who they are and there should be nothing stopping them going to a local school.
"It's really important that the school should be the centre of the community.
"Being the only secondary on the Isle of Dogs, we have got a big role to play."
As for the issue of school places, the headteacher said: "It is a crisis. But, at the moment, it's not an issue for our school as the projected need for more places is further in the future for secondary schools.
"It becomes incredibly difficult to manage as time goes on, for the local authority more than for us.
"We will struggle to go much beyond capacity here and we haven't actually got a big site footprint.
"We haven't got much space and we would struggle to take much more than we already take here."
Go to georgegreens.com.