|Residence United Kingdom|
Name Philip Bujak
|Years active 2014 – present|
|Full Name Philip Edwin Bujak|
Born 17 February 1960 (age 55) (1960 -02-17) Norfolk, United Kingdom
Occupation Educationalist and author
Awards Pro Memoria Medal The Order pro merito Melitensi (Cross) Honorary Freedom of the City of London Liveryman of The Worshipful Company of Gardener's and the Guild of Educators
Books Undefeated: The Extraordinary Life and Death of Lt. Col. Jack Sherwood Kelly, VC, CMG, DSO
Alma mater University of East Anglia
Philip Edwin Bujak (born 17 February 1960) is an educationalist and commentator on Anglo Polish affairs. He is a former CEO of the Montessori St Nicholas Charity and a leading proponent of the Montessori movement within the UK. As CEO of Montessori St Nicholas Charity he was responsible for the founding of the Montessori Schools Association, the Montessori Evaluation and Accreditation Board, and a leader in the drive for the creation of state funded Montessori schools.
Bujak was Head of History at Langley School in Norfolk from 1983–1988, then Head of Lower & Middle School and Boarding Housemaster from 1988–1993 before moving to become Headmaster of Stover School for Girls (1993–2003). He expanded the school from 120 to 535 pupils and opened Stover Preparatory School in 1998.
In 2003 Bujak was appointed Chief Executive of the Montessori St Nicholas Charity in London and became responsible for the largest aspect of the Montessori movement across the United Kingdom. In 2005 he founded The Montessori Schools Association which now has approx 700 Montessori schools in membership. Also in 2005, Bujak secured a deal with Manchester Local Authority to create the first ever state Montessori school at Gorton Mount. In 2008 he created The Montessori Evaluation and Accreditation Board which is now the leading Montessori accreditation scheme in Europe, with 152 leading Montessori schools in membership. In 2009 he also became managing director of Montessori Centre International which is the largest Montessori training college in Europe. In 2012 Bujak led a Montessori bid which was successful in securing the first DfE contract for Montessori with the Charity providing parenting classes funded by central government in Camden, London. In December 2102 Bujak was at the forefront of launching the Montessori Manifesto 2012–2015, which is a major national initiative funded by the St Nicholas Charity, to take Montessori practice out into the most challenged inner city communities across the UK. Bujak left the Montessori school in 2014, being escorted from the premises by the trustees. Following this he was subsequently charged with fraud whilst in his position as CEO, he is awaiting trial for this offence and others which will be heard at Southwark Crown court in July 2016 http://courtnewsuk.co.uk/former-charity-ceo-accused-building-scam/
In 2013 Bujak also expanded the reach of the St Nicholas Charity into Poland with the opening of a new office in Warsaw and the launch of a new on line course in Polish. This is the latest of a series of European initiatives also sponsored by the St Nicholas Charity.
Bujak was co-founder of The Polish Heritage Society UK in 2009 and has recently stood down as vice-chairman to remain as a member. Bujak has worked on a number of restoration projects such as the repair and erection of a statue of Frederyk Chopin at the South Bank Centre (a gift from the people of Poland in the 1970s that had been allowed to fall into disrepair) and the placing of a plaque to commemorate the London home of Stanislaw Sosabowski in Chiswick. In 2013 Bujak led the initiative to place another plaque at 51 New Cavendish Street to mark the London headquarters of the Polish Navy during 1939–1945, unveiled in November 2013 by Witold Sobkow, the Polish ambassador.
In 2102 he began the personal financing of the restoration of a portrait of Edward Rydz-Śmigły by the artist, Jan Hawrylkiewicz. This painting is the second of what is a commitment by Bujak to restore two such artworks a year and followed his restoration of the iconic Battle of Britain painting 'Return from a Successful Sortie' by Artur Horowicz.
In 2011 he was awarded the Pro Memoria Medal by the Republic of Poland in recognition of this work. For his fundraising activities he was awarded the Order pro merito Melitensi (cross) by the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and in 2010 he was granted the Freedom of the City of London. Bujak is also vice-president of the Conservative Friends of Poland (CFoP).
He has been a regional committee member for the National Trust covering Devon & Cornwall, a past trustee of the Silvanus Woodland Trust, and Chairman of Governors for Christchurch Primary School in London.
In memory of his father, Bujak set up the J.F. Bujak Trust, which currently supports Sixth Form students at his old comprehensive school who need funding to undertake education-based travel around the world.
Between 2005–2009, Bujak ran annual residential leadership courses for prospective Headteachers at St Edmund's College, Oxford and was appointed to the Skills & Crafts Commission on reforming apprenticeships.
Bujak maintains a strong interest in writing and in 1988 co-authored Norfolk & Suffolk in The Great War. In 1990 he published Attleborough – The Evolution of a Town, and in 2008 Undefeated – The Extraordinary Life & Death of Lt Col. Jack Sherwood Kelly VC,CMG, DSO.
In 2007 Bujak published 'Around The World in 100 Years' which was a celebration of the centenary of Montessori and its worldwide appeal.
He has also written, and contributed to, several articles published in The Daily Telegraph, The Independent, The Guardian, Evening Standard, and other publications. He is also a commentator on Anglo-Polish relations and history of the Polish people in the UK. He is a regular contributor to Res Publica and Visegrad Insight – two academic journals published from Warsaw.
Bujak enlisted as a private in 1982 and was commissioned into the 6th (V) Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment in 1983 and served as platoon commander to a Royal Norfolk Company alongside his teaching career until leaving the army with the rank of captain in 2003.
His father, Jan Felix Bujak, studying as a linguist in Poland entered captivity with the German Army on the outbreak of war in September 1939. Forced to initially work with the Todt Organisation and subsequently with the Wehrmacht in Italy, he escaped and joined the Polish Army serving with 3rd Carpathian Division, 2nd Corps. He fought at Monte Cassino and was awarded the Krzyz Welecznych (Cross of Valour). His mother, Phyliss Bujak, came from a farming and Worsted manufacturing family in Norfolk and became an Honorary Freeman of the City of London for her charity work aged 82, in 2012. After entering the Army at the age of 16 he was persuaded to become a teacher and attended the University of East Anglia 1979–1982 reading history. He trained for his teacher's certificate at Keswick Hall in Norfolk.
Bujak is a former liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Gardener's. He retired through ill health in 2014.