Headteacher Group

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Sue Vickerman

CEO and Responsible Officer

Sue has worked as an NLE for the last 9 years and has carried out deployments in Leeds, Leicester, Barnsley and Wakefield. These deployments have included executive Headships of Schools in Special measures. She has a strong track record of supporting schools out of OFSTED categories and supporting schools to achieve a judgement of good.

Sue is Head of Aspire Teaching School which has a specific focus on supporting primary schools across the Wakefield district and beyond.  Aspire offers a wide range of leadership programmes focusing on developing the next generation of school / academy leaders.  She is a member of the West Yorkshire Teaching School Council.

Sue was Principal of Gawthorpe Community Academy in Wakefield for 14 years up until September 2018, she was also Executive Headteacher of Towngate Primary Academy September 2016 to August 2017.  Gawthorpe has received two consecutive judgements of outstanding and has been a consistently high performing school for the last 12 years. Sue now works as a full time CEO of the Trust.

Sue’s particular areas of expertise are in promotion of high standards across the primary phases, behaviour management and developing a rich, inspirational and memorable curriculum based on local community need.

Sue has a strong belief that through promoting high aspirations, giving support, challenge, care and respect and creating strong teamwork, excellent teaching and learning will be achieved.

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Andrea Mitchell

Headteacher - Gawthorpe Community Academy

Andrea is Headteacher at Gawthorpe Community Academy where she has worked for over 20 years.   Her passion is Maths in which she is a SLE (Specialist Leader of Education).  She has supported a number of schools in developing their maths curriculum.

Andrea believes the purpose of primary schools / academies is to ensure that high quality teaching and learning is the key to ensuring that children leave Primary school as independent young people with the skills to be successful.

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Annabel Berry

Headteacher - Towngate Primary Academy

Annabel has worked in varied roles within Education since 2005.  She became Headteacher at Towngate Primary Academy as of September 2018, having previously worked as Assistant Principal with responsibilities ranging from leading British Values across school, English core subject lead, LAC teacher, Key Stage Two Coordinator and taking lead responsibility of Safeguarding compliance and training within the academy.  Annabel has taught in every key stage across school – leading to her well-rounded understanding of teaching and learning.

Annabel firmly believes that by offering all pupils a broad and balanced curriculum, rich with opportunities to explore, challenge and achieve, pupils are equipped with the core tools to become lifelong learners.

Annabel is passionate about embedding a ‘Values’ curriculum within the academy; she believes that when children can understand their own moral compass, they develop their resilience, empathy and tolerance for themselves and others.

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Sue Gardiner

Headteacher - Half Acres Primary Academy

Sue Gardiner has spent her whole career of over 25 years at Half Acres Primary Academy, becoming the Head of School in 2012, when the school federated with another local school.

During this time she has seen the Academy undergo many changes including expanding to become a two form entry school and becoming part of the Inspire Partnership Multi Academy Trust. Her experience in the classroom included teaching both Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 classes, developing the curriculum and mentoring students and NQTs. She continues to enjoy spending time in the classroom, supporting with teaching and learning.

In 2017 she became a Local Leader of Education and has supported SLEs from her own school in deployments within the Wakefield area.

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Joanne Kershaw

Headteacher - Ackton Pastures Primary Academy

Joanne has taught in Wakefield schools for ten years across all age ranges and leading a variety of subjects, before taking up post as Vice Principal in a Bradford Academy.  Leading on curriculum development and improving standards in a Special Measures academy, Joanne has gained considerable experience in a diverse community where over fifty languages were spoken.  She has significant experience with a range of Special Educational Needs and in supporting parents of children with significant needs.

Joanne believes that every minute is a learning minute, whether you are the student or the teacher, and that everyone should learn something new every day.  Taking up post as Headteacher at Ackton Pastures in September 2019, Joanne’s goal is to raise the aspirations of the pupils and families in the community, and to ensure that the academy supports every individual to reach their goals.

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Susan Harrison

Headteacher - Fitzwilliam Primary School

Susan has been Headteacher at Fitzwilliam Primary School since 2005. During this time she has worked relentlessly to ensure that all children and parents who are part of the Fitzwilliam Primary community participate in an education which nurtures and challenges each of them to be the best they can possibly be. She believes passionately in school’s ethos of ‘working and growing together’ and firmly believes that parents should be fully involved in their child’s education.  Consequently she has participated in a number of successful projects which explore how to further engage parents.  In addition to this she has also pursued her own independent study achieving a Master’s Degree in Education which enabled her to work with colleagues from across the education spectrum.

Susan is a Local Leader of Education.

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Jane Littlewood

Headteacher - Girnhill Infant School

Jane has been Headteacher at Girnhill Infant School from October 2016. Prior to this she was Deputy Headteacher at Girnhill, her responsibilities included EYFS Leader, Assessment Coordinator and Specialist Leader of Education in Early Years, Phonics and Literacy.

Jane is passionate about Teaching and Learning and ensuring that children reach their full potential through an exciting curriculum and working with parents to enable them to support their children’s learning is a key area of continuing development.  Children are at the very heart of everything at Girnhill and all actions taken always have the best interests of the children at their core.

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Lisa Sanderson

Headteacher - South Hiendley Primary School

Lisa has worked in education for over 20 years in various roles across three different schools.  She worked in Foundation Stage, Key Stage One and Key Stage Two before becoming an Assistant Headteacher, Deputy Headteacher, Acting Headteacher and, finally, Headteacher of South Hiendley School in January 2009.

South Hiendley Primary School joined the Inspire Partnership Multi-Academy Trust on 1st May 2018.  Lisa and all the staff and governors believe joing the MAT is a very positive opportunity for the school.

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Steven Walker

Headteacher - Ash Grove Primary Academy

Steven was Headteacher of Towngate Primary Academy for 3 years and in that time he developed the leadership and management of the school, with a particular focus on the development of middle and senior leaders.  Pupil progress, attendance and attainment for all learners have improved as have outcomes in all key stages. Steve has now taken the role of Headtecher in the latest Academy to join our Trust.

Steven has worked in two Outstanding schools, and held middle and senior leadership positions in both key stage one and key stage two. His leadership roles have included the development of the curriculum, literacy, science and music co-ordinator and data management including responsibility for reporting to governors and conducting the pupil progress meetings across all classes in key stage one and two.

As an SLE Steven worked on a 1-to-1 basis with teachers across key stage 2 to develop provision, improve performance and outcomes and support their professional development. Steven has also worked with larger groups as part of the Improving Teaching Programme and Outstanding Teacher Programme for several years and developed the RQT network and ‘Next Step Outstanding Programme’ alongside another SLE.

Steven intends to use all these skills to ensure the rapid improvement of Ash Grove.

Steven is passionate about the right children have to an excellent, all round education. Children deserve to be taught in stimulating, challenging and engaging ways, capturing their interests and allowing them to feel a sense of pride.