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Threads of Success: Equality and Inclusion Team

Meet the Team

I joined the Early Years & Childcare Service as the Equality & Inclusion Manager in September 2021 and bring with me 25 years of experience working in education.
As a qualified teacher (BA Hons) since 1996 I have worked in infant, primary and secondary education and held a range of senior leadership roles relating to curriculum design, safeguarding, professional development, and whole school leadership. I held the role of SENCO in a primary school for 7 years from 2009 and was simultaneously responsible for Early Years & KS1 in my role of Deputy Headteacher.

Early Years education and supporting children with Special Educational Needs & Disabilities (SEND) have become my two areas of specialism. I have had four years of working as an Early Years Specialist Teacher and this has further extended my range of experience to support early years settings to support our youngest children who are presenting with additional and complex needs.

When I have some spare time, I enjoy heading to the beach for a walk and spending time with family and friends.

I began my work with young children and families in a small parent-run pre-school in the mid-1980s. I went on to manage the setting and initially trained as a nursery nurse (NNEB).
I have worked with a range of organisations and providers across the statutory, voluntary and private sector in addition to providing support to individual practitioners, parents, teachers and professionals working within the early Years sector. My previous roles have included time working as an Ofsted Inspector, a Quality Improvement Mentor and an Early Years Teaching & Learning Adviser.

When I’m not working, time spent with my twin granddaughters is very precious to me; I also like to be outdoors enjoying the natural world as much as I can.

I qualified as an NNEB nursery nurse in 1976 and gained wide experience within the Early Years sector and across the 0-5 age range working in day nurseries, hospitals and pre-schools.

I graduated as a qualified teacher with a BA (Hons) degree in 1999 and taught for five years before joining the Kent Advisory Service as an Early Years Advisory Teacher in 2004. I became a senior adviser in 2011 and became part of the Equality and Inclusion Team in April 2013. I have two grown up children and was privileged to be able to spend time at home with them during their early years.

When I have some spare time I enjoy walking and I love listening to live music, most of all I enjoy the time I spend with my family and friends.

My career as an Early Years Adviser began when my own children were young and I volunteered to help out in the reception class. I later went on to complete a four year full time teacher training course at Goldsmith’s College, specialising in the 3-8 age range, graduating as a qualified teacher in 1998. After teaching for ten years I joined KCC in 2008 as an Early Years Advisory Teacher for Sevenoaks district, and completed an accredited SENCo training course in 2011.

I have two grown up children, who are a great delight to me and who kindled my passion for working with young children because they were so much fun and joy to be with (and still are!). Outside of working hours I like to spend time with my family and friends, and have as many holidays as possible.

I qualified as an NNEB Nursery Nurse working firstly in a London social services day nursery. I worked with babies and children aged from six months to five years old as a Nursery Officer. I continued to work in London for twenty years in the Education department, working in a wide range of nurseries and a Children’s Centre. I have carried out a variety of roles including being a SENCo, a Deputy Manager and Manager. I moved to Kent in 2005, working for three years in the private and voluntary sector before joining Kent Early Years Advisory Service. I have continued my professional development undertaking a Foundation Degree in Early Years, an accredited SENCO qualification, and a City and Guilds qualification to teach adults. I am an ICAN licenced trainer and have a good knowledge of Makaton. I carry out a lead role in supporting the Integrated Review at Two process in Kent.

Outside work, I have two grown up children who are my world. I am lucky to live by the sea and in my spare time enjoy long beach walks with my dog.

I have over 25 years’ experience in education, working predominantly with early years children. I worked as a teaching assistant in UK and in Argentina before qualifying as a teacher in 1998. I taught infants in three schools in three different counties. I have held a range of different roles including class teacher, SENCO, Head of Foundation Stage, KS1 Manager and Senior Manager.

I joined KCC as an Early Years Advisory Teacher in 2006. I was Team Leader for Thanet Local Children’s Services Partnership and enjoyed working on local projects bringing settings and schools together. In 2010 I became EYFS SEN Adviser in Canterbury and Swale, and I am now an Equality and Inclusion Adviser working in East of the County. I am an experienced trainer and enjoy writing and delivering training. I completed the Accredited SENCo course, and I am an I Can Licensed trainer. I edit the Equality and Inclusion pages of the Kelsi website.

I enjoy singing, music, art, going to the cinema, theatre and tap dancing. Friends and family are very important to me and I try to spend as much time with them as possible.

I have over 18 years’ experience working within the sector. Starting as a volunteer in my children’s nursery, I quickly realised I had found my passion and vocation. So, leaving my career as an NHS manager, I embarked on my early years and childcare journey.

Over this period I have worked with babies, infants, and young children, in full day care and pre-schools, pack away & purpose built, across the PVI sector. My journey has included being a key person, individual needs assistant, room leader, SENCO, manager (with three outstanding Ofsted judgements), Ofsted Inspector and Improvement Adviser. In my current role I am privileged to be able to support settings to meet the needs of all children, especially those more vulnerable to poorer long-term outcomes.

I am qualified as an Early Years Teacher (EYPS) and teach in the post-16 education sector. I have mentored students on Early Years degrees and to successfully gain their Early Years Teacher status.

As an advocate for life-long learning, I continue to upskill myself by investing in my own professional development. I have a keen interest in the theatre, literature, and the Arts. I practice mindfulness to support my wellbeing, enjoy local walks on the Ashdown Forest and holidays in the mountains as well as days by the sea.

I am an experienced Early Years adviser and trainer, passionate about improving outcomes for children and families, especially the most disadvantaged and vulnerable. I have fifteen years’ experience working in the Early Years sector gained both as a provider and as a Local Authority Adviser. Following a 20-year career in marketing and IT, I made the life choice to focus on a profession where I could make a difference and for me childcare was the obvious one. From home-based childcare to full day care, I gained the real-life experiences and the degree-level qualifications required to fully support settings in providing the best possible education and care for children. I joined Kent County Council (now The Education People) Early Years and Childcare service as an adviser and trainer, starting as a Childcare Business Officer through to Early Years Improvement Adviser and finally in my current role as Early Years Equality & Inclusion Adviser. In my spare time I love being a grandma and spending time in nature.

My early years career began when my own children started nursery and I became a volunteer. This then led to me becoming a full-time member of their nursery team and eventually becoming the nursery manager and SENCo. During this time, I worked my way through NVQs, Diplomas, management NVQs and then finally completing my BA Honours Degree in Early Childhood Studies.

After working at the same setting for 10 years, I joined the Early Years and Childcare team in September 2019 as an Equality and Inclusion Adviser supporting settings in the South.

I am an enthusiastic and highly motivated Early Years practitioner and my commitment and passion for the sector allows me to inspire, motivate and engage the workforce. I strongly believe that by using role-modelling, mentor-coaching techniques, empowerment and engagement, high quality learning experiences can be created - ultimately resulting in improved outcomes for all children. I have a degree in Early Childhood and Health Studies, hold Early Years Professional Status and am a qualified Forest School leader.

I have over 18 years’ experience working in the childcare sector and bring theoretical and practical knowledge from a number of diverse fields having held positions at practitioner, deputy, and manager level within settings, as well as supporting Out of School and holiday club provisions. I joined Kent County Council as an Improvement Adviser in 2015, where I later joined the Equality and Inclusion team in 2020.

In my spare time, I enjoy sewing and baking as well as being adventurous (running, hiking, quad biking, ice-climbing).

I qualified as a Primary School Teacher in 2005, initially taking up a position as a Reception Class Teacher. Over the last 18 years I have taken on a range of roles including Nursery Manager, SENCO, Early Years Lead Teacher, Designated Safeguarding Lead and Student Mentor. I have had the huge privilege of setting up and managing three brand new nurseries, within school settings. At one of my previous schools, we worked towards becoming an Autism Accredited School.

I have always been passionate about Inclusion and recently completed the National SENCO Award at Canterbury Christ Church University. I joined the Early Years Equality & Inclusion Team as an adviser in 2022.

My mum was a childminder for many years, and I think this is where my enthusiasm for childcare and education first began. I have two children of my own, aged 10 and 12. As a family we love film nights, going camping and visiting theme parks.

I joined the Early Years Childcare and Education sector in 2004. I have been part of the Emporium Plus team (previously Treasure Chest Resource Centre) for 12 years and have achieved many goals within the service. I was promoted from Resource Centre Coordinator to Senior Resources Coordinator in 2016. I am very lucky to have such a great team to work alongside.

I have two children, Millie who is 7 and Joshua who is 3. My main hobby is paddleboarding. I also snowboard and do as much walking as possible.