CEO, South Westmorland Multi-Academy Trust
Headteacher, Dallam School
I started my teaching career in a challenging school in a disadvantaged part of Preston where I went on to become lead teacher responsible for more able provision. I then took on a middle leadership role in my home town of Blackpool, becoming Assistant Headteacher and ultimately Deputy Headteacher. It was an honour to serve at this level in the town in which I had grown up.
I completed the Future Leaders flagship programme in 2009 and went on to be a leadership coach for the following year’s 2010 cohort. Involvement in Future Leaders coincided with my Deputy Headship – a school in particularly challenging circumstances but commended as ‘rapidly improving’ by Ofsted. I was appointed to my first Headship in Grimsby, serving the second most deprived ward in the country in 2012. The school had never been a ‘Good’ school, having previously been in special measures; I was delighted that it received its first, ever ‘Good’ judgement in 2015.
After the school received this judgement, I was seconded as Director of Education across the multi-academy trust, providing school-school support to 33 primary, secondary and special schools. I then moved on the undertake a new challenge closer to home as Executive Principal role within Oasis Community Learning; leading a split site school in the most deprived town in England, Oldham, and working closely with the local authority to close a failing school in the town and provide tailored support for the children affected.
Not necessarily looking to move on, I was attracted by a unique opportunity of growing a MAT from scratch and I subsequently took up post in 2018 as CEO of a small Trust on the border of Lancashire and Cumbria which also (not ready to step completely away from Headship!) allows me to be the Head of the distinctive Dallam School which has extensive extended services including state boarding, community education, adult education, outdoor education and sports programmes.
I am committed to using the strengths the Trust has, and the experiences I feel humbled to have gathered so far, to support others, develop strong and collaborative partnerships and make a positive impact on the education system.