Kirsten Finley (National Leader of Education)
Head of Teaching School, Noctua Teaching School Alliance and Headteacher, Tranmere Park Primary School
I was appointed to the post of Head Teacher at Tranmere Park Primary School at Easter 2007 after 4 years as Deputy Head. Prior to taking up my role at Tranmere Park, 10 years teaching in South Leeds and Liverpool had given me valuable insights into some exceptionally challenging school perspectives.
A focus on an ambitious vision to raise aspirations and standards at the school brought about Tranmere Park’s first OFSTED grading of the school as ‘outstanding’ in June 2006 and a subsequent inspection in January 2009 also graded the school as ‘outstanding’ in all areas. Outcomes for pupils have continued to rise since that date with achievement in the top 5th percentile nationally and in the top 150 state schools in 2016.
I had previously been employed as Literacy Consultant by Leeds Local Authority working with the School Improvement Team to support schools in challenging circumstances. After taking up my post at Tranmere Park, my school to school support work continued through LLE designation, NCTL Leadership Development School status and finally NLE and National Support School status gained in 2015. During this time I have supported a wide range of schools to improve their outcomes either from ‘Satisfactory’ or ‘Requiring Improvement’ schools to ‘Good’ or ‘Good’ schools who are seeking to improve. I have also worked with 2 schools in an Ofsted category on their school improvement journey.
I was initially a founding partner of the Noctua TSA, a cohort 4 Teaching School, taking over as the lead school with Teaching School/National Support School status in Summer 2016. Noctua TSA continues to grow, working across Leeds and Bradford, with 42 active partners and offering a wide range of CPD and support for schools.
David Roundtree (National Leader of Education)
Head of a federation: Moortown Primary, Scholes (Elmet) Primary and St James' CE Primary.
I graduated way back in 1992 from Strathclyde University in Glasgow with a degree in marketing and business. Having not especially enjoyed the world of business, I completed a PGCE in 1996 at York St John University. Four years later, I did a Masters in Primary Education. In 2005, whilst working as a Deputy in Harrogate, I completed the National Professional Qualification for Headship.
My first job was as in a small village school in Warwickshire where I was the first Y5,6 teacher in this expanding primary, a former infant school. Since then, I’ve been a teacher in a variety of different primaries in five different local authorities. I’ve also worked as a primary Maths lecturer in a teacher training institution.
Following a period as a seconded headteacher of a tiny rural school in the Yorkshire Dales, I became headteacher of Moortown Primary in Leeds in 1997. At the time, Moortown Primary was rated ‘good’ by Ofsted. In 2011, the school was judged to be ‘outstanding’. I’m now the head of a federation of three schools: Moortown Primary, Scholes (Elmet) Primary and St James' CE Primary.
I really enjoy the opportunity to support other teachers, school leaders and schools as a local leader of education and as a pupil premium reviewer. As a teacher, I especially enjoyed English, Maths, Art and PSHE. As a school leader, I still love getting into classrooms and observing, evaluating (and sometimes improving!) what’s going on. I also enjoy the strategic aspects of the role: self-evaluation (including SEF writing) and improvement planning.
Lesley West (National Leader of Education)
Heateacher, Pudsey Primrose Hill Primary School
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Deborah Kenny (Local Leader of Education)
Headteacher, Carr Manor Primary School
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