A NEW education boss has pledged that schoolchildren across South Craven and the whole of North Yorkshire should have access to everything they need to succeed.

Judith Kirk was speaking after being appointed to lead the county council's education and skills service.

She will take-up the role in the spring following the retirement of current assistant director, Paul Brennan.

"I am delighted to be joining North Yorkshire County Council and very much look forward to working with partners across the sector – united in our ambition to achieve the best we can for all our children and young people," said Mrs Kirk, who is presently deputy director for education, employment and skills at Bradford Council.

"I bring a relentless commitment to education and improving outcomes for children and young people.

"Life chances should be in young people's own hands and not determined by geography or family circumstances.

"I am determined that every young person in North Yorkshire's schools must have access to the right opportunities, experiences and support they need to succeed.

"I look forward to meeting the challenges and delivering opportunities."

Mrs Kirk began her career in teaching at Barnet in 1986.

She is qualified in educational leadership and management and has been a registered Ofsted inspector.

Her new appointment is welcomed by North Yorkshire's corporate director of children and young people's services, Stuart Carlton.

"Judith will build on the great work already delivered by Paul Brennan and his team," he said.

"I look forward to working with her to ensure the continued improvement of our schools – working collaboratively with them – and the creation of opportunities for our young people, despite the challenging budget climate that the education system faces."