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The Extended Leadership Team

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Meet The Extended Leadership Team

Alicia is Head of Service for Specialist Employment, strategically leading the service to support those with disabilities to move into sustainable employment. She continues to shape strategic positive outcomes for clients with disabilities at a national level with the Department for Education, the NHS and the Department of Work and Pensions. Alicia has worked at a senior level in the private, charity and public sector. As a professional careers guidance practitioner and educationist, Alicia has been a Head of Careers in a large secondary school, before progression to advising schools on their career education provision and obtaining careers quality standards.

During her time in Kent, Alicia has held a senior position with a large charity supporting young people and adults, implementing and managing major national projects across the South East of England before moving to the Local Authority, where her work has included developing the Kent Supported Employment team and taking it to a nationally recognised level of quality.

Alex Gamby is Head of Early Years and Childcare for The Education People, a role she previously held for Kent County Council from 1999 – 2010 and 2013 to August 2018.  Alex has extensive experience as a senior leader in the early years and childcare arena.  She is a teacher by profession, with a Bachelor of Education Honours degree, particularly qualified to teach children and young people with special educational needs and with a Theatre and Drama studies specialism.  Alex also holds a Masters in Business Administration, Diplomas in Management and Strategic Management and is an accredited mediator.

Key features of Alex’s career include being Head of the Primary Department in a large, inner London school for pupils with severe learning difficulties, coordinating Home School Liaison Support for children under five with special educational needs across the Inner London Education Authority, being Principle Under Fives Officer for a north London borough followed by Head of The Children’s Service in a south London borough and a secondment from KCC to the (then) Department for Education and Employment during 2002 and 2003 as Adviser to London boroughs Early Years Development and Childcare Partnerships.

On a more personal note, Alex was the founder and Artistic Director of a London amateur musical theatre company which ran during the 1990s. The Company was for children, young people and adults with special needs and disabilities and their families and friends, seeking to promote and support equality and inclusion through the medium of musical theatre.

Claire has managed the Education Safeguarding Service in Kent since 2016 and is committed to all aspects of safeguarding children. She is an experienced and registered social worker, having qualified in 1999 before completing a post graduate Advanced Award in Social Work (AASW) and MSc in Social Work (Children and Families) in 2005. Claire joined the service in 2006, initially working as the County Lead for Early Years before becoming an area safeguarding lead for both settings and schools.

Claire and her team have comprehensive experience and knowledge of practice, legislation and statutory guidance including:
⦁ Extensive frontline child protection experience and management in children and families social work teams;
⦁ Managing allegations in the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) role
⦁ Active membership as education lead on a variety of multi-agency panels, including for Child Death, Domestic Homicide Reviews and Serious Case Reviews, child exploitation, Prevent, Online Safety and Honour Based Abuse
⦁ Policy and procedure writing and contribution to government working parties and consultations on behalf of the Local Authority
⦁ Independent Management Investigations for complaints and allegations against Headteachers, other staff and volunteers
⦁ Supporting schools in assessing sexual harassment and sexually harmful behaviour by pupils
⦁ Writing and delivering a comprehensive training and conference programme for Designated Safeguarding Leads and whole staff groups.

Ian joined Schools Financial Services (SFS) in the year 2000 and shortly afterwards in 2001 qualified as a Chartered Certified Accountant. He worked for five years in SFS before moving to the central education finance team where he spent three years.

In 2008 he moved to the Schools Budget team, where he stayed until he returned back to SFS in 2019.

Over this twenty year period Ian has gained significant knowledge and been involved in a broad range of school related financial activities.

  • Service delivery of contracts in a variety of different schools.
  • Clerk and a supporting LA Officer to Kent’s Schools’ Funding Forum for 10 years.
  • Calculating and issuing of school budgets, including High Needs and Early Years budgets.
  • Integrally involved in the implementation of the National School Funding Formula from 2013-14 for Kent schools.
  • Head of Service for SFS that is responsible for, Returns and Compliance, Training, Service Delivery and School Support (Deficit Schools).

Lisa has over 15 years’ experience in education across all phases, including 10 years in senior leadership. She has worked in various UK local authorities and overseas as a SENDCO, school leader, adviser, and executive leader.

In her most recent role she has worked with secondary and primary schools on strategic school improvement, training and development in all areas with a more recent focus on inclusion. She sits on the SEND strategic KCC group and leads countywide forums.

As a school leader she has held various areas of whole school responsibility and was the Secondary lead for inclusion in a large academy chain. She has designed and implemented enhanced alternative curriculum pathways, led the strategic oversight of key policies to ensure improvement for all and is qualified to masters level.

Lisa has also worked overseas in the Middle East, initially as a senior leader and then as an executive leader in a British school. This role focused on implementing new and adaptive curriculum approaches, overseeing staff professional development and securing the school’s pastoral strategies. Her work overseas also extended to an advisory role; supporting the progress of new to post leaders and creating robust CPD to support staff development.

Lisa believes wholeheartedly in the need for a broad and meaningful curriculum for all young people. She is passionate about supporting schools to develop and enhance their curriculum offer with innovative ideas that will lead to positive outcomes. In her spare time she volunteers to support vulnerable young people to engage with their local community and enjoys travelling & learning new languages.

Niall leads The Education People’s Outdoor Learning Service, which provides a wide range of high quality outdoor learning day and residential experiences across 5 outdoor learning centres in Kent and Wales. The service also provides educational visits advice, guidance, training and support for schools, youth and community groups.

With over 20 years of experience as a outdoor learning practitioner and qualified teacher, Niall brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the team, including:

  • An accredited Outdoor Education Advisors Panel (OEAP) Outdoor Education Advisor, with 12 years of experience of providing advice, guidance and training for schools and youth groups in Kent and London
  • A member of the OEAP training group developing Educational Visit Coordinator (EVC) and other outdoor learning training courses at a national level; along with supporting the development of the OEAP National Guidance for educational visits
  • A wealth of experience as an outdoor learning practitioner and instructor across a wide range of activities from water sports, mountain activities, forest schools and bush craft to field studies and environmental education
  • An experienced and qualified teacher, across primary and secondary phases.
  • Extensive experience of working with schools to develop and integrate outdoor learning into the curriculum - using the school’s own site, local area along with educational visits and activities further afield
  • Expert at designing outdoor learning experiences and interventions to meet schools specific needs and challenges - from dealing with behaviour issues and supporting special needs, to driving improvements in literacy and numeracy through use of outdoors.

Rob has extensive experience in skills and employability services, having worked in this sector for over 30 years.

Having started as a careers advisor working in local authority schools, Rob then moved to the world of Education Business Partnerships. Here he set up the City Of Westminster work experience scheme funded by the local schools and an inner London school business mentoring programme, which eventually operated in schools across seven London boroughs.

In 2006 Rob moved to Kent to set up the KentChoices website that quickly became an integral part of the post 16 transition process and is still used extensively by schools today. Working closely with education, training, third sector and local authority services he became the lead for the local authority's approach to Raising the Participation Age for young people and is now the county lead for NEET reduction.

Rob focuses on building partnerships, analytical planning and challenging existing thinking to look for new ways to deliver high quality services.

Suzanne is head of Governor Services and has worked in education for 15 years. She started working for the teaching union, NASUWT where she worked with teachers, leaders and union representatives. Suzanne also has a school background and has  worked in both primary and secondary phases including the role of Clerk to Governors in a Secondary Federation.  She has a Diploma in Support Work in Schools.

Suzanne joined KCC in 2014 to lead the Leadership and Governance Admin team.  Her interest in schools, governance and enthusiasm to be fully involved in school improvement led her to apply for the role of Area Governance Officer in North Kent.  Suzanne fostered good relationships with the schools, headteachers, School Improvement Team and Governors and from there stepped into the role of Governor Services Manager.

With her background Suzanne has a clear understanding of the importance of relationship building and the skills Governors need to fulfil their core duties.  Her passion is training and ensuring Governors have access to a full and varied training programme that supports the work they do to improve the life chances of young people in both Kent and beyond.

Tel is the Principal Lead in School Improvement for Primary Schools covering provision for 4-11 year olds across the county. She has extensive experience of school improvement both within and beyond Kent, supporting schools in the role of Improvement Adviser, Senior Adviser and Acting Principal within KCC.

In addition Tel has a proven track record as a Consultant Headteacher, supporting schools in challenging circumstances in order to drive rapid and sustained improvements. More recently Tel has worked as an education consultant, broadening the scope and depth of her knowledge. She has achieved the National Professional Qualification for Headteachers and has had strategic leadership experience across a range of education providers.

Before joining the public sector Trinie worked as Operations Manager for a number of large multinationals in the private sector, specialising in company mergers, implementing, and streamlining systems, successfully managing cross-functional teams to meet challenges against tight deadlines and financial constraints.

In 2008 she joined the KCC Skills and Employability Service focusing on the then expanding county vocational skill centre programme, taking responsibility for all service budgets and expenditure and supporting the Head of Service with service expansion to incorporate further strands of working such as Assisted Apprentices and Supported Employment. Over the years Trinie also covered core KCC projects such as the delegation of pupil referral units, TUPE of LSE staff, property transfers.

Trinie transferred to The Education People in 2018, as Contracts and Operations Manager. Her role is to oversee the companies’ core KCC Educational contract which involves working closely with the authority commissioners and all ten services across the company; to support Head of Service and staff on delivery of the contract specifications. Reporting directly to the company CEO and Executive Committee on the company operation and outcomes against key performance indicators, managing risk, representing the company at the authority commissioning boards, and negotiating further additional authority contracts. Trinie also works with the services and company Business Development team on traded opportunities.

Louise is the Head of Business Transformation for The Education People and manages the Business Transformation Team. Louise is the lead for strategic planning and guidance on all things IT, systems, change management and transformation across the company. The Business Transformation Team manage the core business systems that support The Education People and our customer facing colleagues in delivering educational services; they scope, plan, deliver, and implement multiple systems and transformation projects; and support the central and divisional services by ensuring we have robust infrastructure, network and IT provisions. The Business Transformation Team manage several large third-party IT supplier contracts ensuring integration and consistency across company-wide systems.

Prior to joining The Education People in 2018, Louise worked for Kent County Council for 11 years, in a variety of areas including Adult Social Services, Corporate Finance, Enterprise Resource Planning, Financial Systems, Compliance, Business Development and Business Management. Louise now uses the experience and expertise gained in both local government and many years in the private sector, along with her drive, enthusiasm and passion for growth, development and transformation, to shape The Education People’s transformation strategy.

Louise carries her passion for creativity, and training and development into her personal life. She is qualified to teach many different areas of dance, including ballet, modern, freestyle, cheer leading and Irish dancing, and ran her own private dance school for many years.