Anita Watts is a recently retired Primary Head teacher, having worked for a variety of Local Authorities. During her teaching career, Anita has worked in a diverse range of schools in Leicestershire, Merton, North Yorkshire, Teeside, and Hampshire, and then as a Head teacher in Surrey and Wandsworth.Whilst serving as a Head teacher for 17 years, Anita also became a Primary Strategy Consultant Leader, working alongside a variety of schools in relation to school improvement projects. This led to further roles as a Basic Skills Quality Mark assessor, and Consultant Head teacher on the National College’s programme “Developing the Capacity for School Improvement.” She later became an LLE, and continued to support local leadership in relation to raising standards in diverse communities.
Anita has a long association with the IQM having engaged with the process in early headship, showing a deep commitment to Inclusive practice. She continued to use the process both as a systematic tool for improvement and a way in which the milestones of success could be celebrated, at the various schools with which she worked. Anita became an assessor for IQM whilst still a headteacher in Wandsworth, and has now continued after retirement. She is married with three grown up sons and a grand-daughter. In her spare time she is a member of a community choir, and enjoys dancing and travel.
Sue Rush is a qualified teacher and trainer with experience of inclusive education and safeguarding advisory work across the broad spectrum of schools: maintained and independent, mainstream and special. She has taught in both the primary and secondary phases and has trained adults on behalf of schools, local authorities, colleges, universities and Local Safeguarding Children Boards.As an ex-LA officer Sue has strategic experience of both inclusive education and safeguarding. Her professional bodies are PATOSS (the Professional Association of Teachers of Students with Specific Learning Difficulties) and CAPE (Child Protection in Education), a network for professionals who support education establishments in their safeguarding responsibilities.
Since 2006 Sue has been as an independent trainer and advisor. She has undertaken projects for children’s services, schools, charities, voluntary and community bodies, faith groups and universities in the UK and the Middle East. She has her own teaching and assessment practice and since 2010 has thoroughly enjoyed her work as a school assessor for the Inclusion Quality Mark.
Stephanie is a highly experienced manager and consultant who has led key national projects and staff in a business and education environment. Following her work as a Head teacher in the Primary sector, she moved into teacher training (PGCE and GTP) and became Head of Early Years. She was invited to become Senior Project Lead for a company leading EYPS National moderation and QA before working as an independent consultant.Stephanie is passionate about the importance of Inclusion and seeks to promote an inclusive approach in all settings. She is a skilled communicator who establishes positive and constructive relationships with stakeholders at all levels, she recognises the importance of parent partnership in the learning process.
Barry has a wealth of experience over 35 years in schools as teacher, pastoral leader, faculty leader, deputy headteacher and headteacher. He has also had the unusual experience of being a senior leader in an all through school. He retired in 2015.He led his last school to significant improvements rising to above national average for the first time in 2013 and received recognition from SSAT for being among the top 100 most improved schools. Exclusions reduced dramatically and attendance improved significantly. The school had over 50% disadvantaged students.
Barry led the school to achieving several awards including; The International Schools Award, Leading Parent Partnership Award, the Inspiring IAG Careers Quality Mark, Teaching Leaders Delivery School, Stonewall Champion School, The Diana Award (Anti Bullying Ambassadors) and of course, the Inclusion Quality Mark.
Allow me to introduce myself – my name is Max Kelly and I’m always delighted to be invited to undertake assessments of schools with regards to gaining the Inclusion Quality Mark’s Inclusive School Award.As well as my work for IQM as an assessor, I am an Executive Headteacher and work in the Isle of Man: a fantastic self-governing island in the geographical centre of the United Kingdom – right in the middle of the Irish Sea.
I currently head up two schools, one of which is in a thriving tourist location and one of which is a small rural school, but I have worked in a wide variety of settings of all shapes and sizes, including primary schools, junior schools, infant schools and Children’s Centres. I currently serve as a member on the Isle of Man Fostering Panel and I am also the President of the National Association of Headteachers branch in the Isle of Man.
One of my schools is a member of the IQM family, and holds Centre of Excellence status, the other has just started on that journey.
My work as a director at a children’s residential home, contact centre, adoption and fostering service and nursery has given me a wide experience of working with children and families and has shaped my views of inclusion and why it’s so vital that we get this right in our educational settings.
I was fortunate to have had the responsibility for increasingly challenging areas within school settings during my career, continually challenging myself and developing expertise, allowing me to grow and positively affect the life chances of students in my care with each new challenge. Such as developing strategies for and leading Inclusion in different settings, developing links with external agencies and businesses that supported students in school to achieve success. Perhaps the most challenging role and one that was a constant during my 36 years in education has been my role in behaviour management and a drive and enthusiasm to improve students behaviour, attitudes to learning and hence their life chances. Part of this process was the necessity to change not only student but Staff attitudes. Providing a consistent framework for students and staff to adhere to and high level relevant CPD for staff including NPSLBA as a Local Lead for Halton LA running the National programme for Specialist Leaders in Behaviour and Attendance for individual and full-staff behaviour management INSETs delivered over a sustained period of time. During 32 years teaching in Runcorn as Assistant Head-teacher I was the Lead Behaviour Professional within the school, attended regional National Strategy meetings representing Halton, was a member of the Halton Project Board, overseeing the Locality Working Pilot group bringing together external services in key areas of Halton to support vulnerable students and families, I was a Governor at The Bridge Pupil referral Unit for many years, I held Strategic responsibility for the school SEF and SIP and I was a Teaching Awards North West finalist in 2006 for Enterprise .One of the key issues many schools face is addressing the social context of the students – deprivation, disaffection and demotivation. I developed a holistic approach to dealing with young people using the ECM model. By unifying the disparate areas of school into one Inclusion team and ensuring that students were nurtured and guided rather than using a wholly punitive model allowed students to succeed in their often difficult journey through school from nursery to sixteen and beyond. Ensuring that the all staff provided daily support to the most vulnerable student’s often encompassing complex needs such as social, emotional, behavioural and mental health issues that previously would have seen them excluded from school and lessons. This was achieved by ensuring that every student existed in a culture of equality, support and nurture building in self -worth and self-esteem while developing their emotional intelligence.
I believe that everyone should be treated equally and with respect, from the student who is causing issues to the parent and or colleague who has issues, looking beyond these issues/conflicts to the potential that always lies beyond. Partnerships with students, colleagues, parents and others is essential in ensuring that young people are successful and given the opportunities they deserve. I believe in setting high personal standards for myself and expecting the same from others including student’s colleagues and parents. Partnerships with parents’ are fundamental to successful outcomes for young people. All young people should be given the opportunity to achieve their full potential in an atmosphere of mutual respect and taught to respect staff and peers while also challenging stereotypes. I believe that when working with people, especially young people adults need to be approachable and have credibility with them, with staff and with parents. I have always been an enthusiastic self-confident teacher that enabled a rapport to be built effectively with students and colleagues allowing them to engage effectively in their learning. This continues to be the case as an IQM Assessor working in different educational settings.
Sandra Sefer has been supporting children and families with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities within Enfield Local Authority for almost thirty years. She is passionate about inclusion and takes great pleasure working with professionals constantly striving towards best possible outcomes for all children. She currently works as SENCo / LAC coordinator and Designated Safeguarding Lead at an outstanding Primary School holding the Flagship IQM award and Initial Teacher Training Status.
For the last three years Sandra has also worked as a SEND consultant within the Local Authority supporting professionals embedding the SEND reforms. This takes her into a range of settings including pre-schools, PVIs, mainstream schools, special schools, academies and colleges.
Sandra also delivers bespoke training in inclusive practice, policy and legislation through an outstanding National Teaching School.
Anne has a wealth of experience in various leadership roles in all sectors of education including the state and independent sector including mainstream and special schools.
Whilst a Head, Anne worked with the National Strategies showing how the school had developed a whole-school subject and group analysis. This enabled the school to consider wider teaching and learning issues and significantly improve outcomes across the curriculum for all SEN pupils.
Anne’s last role in school was Headteacher of a secondary mixed SEMH school that Anne led from RI to Outstanding from 2009-2016. The Ofsted report described her as an ‘exceptional leader’.
Anne is a freelance consultant working for IQM and is also a consultant leading workshops and supporting with school improvement in a variety of schools. She works for Best Practice and Herts for Learning as a consultant.
Anne is also a qualified coach and mentor and is a member of the Institute of Leadership and Management. She coaches senior leaders in education and business.
Anne adheres to key documents such as the ICF core competencies as well as the EMCC code of ethics.
I am a highly experienced Education Consultant. My career has involved working with schools in challenging circumstances and those that are highly successful. I have delivered training to Governing Bodies, mentored and coached Senior Leadership Teams, including the appraisal of teachers and Headteachers. I have developed and delivered a range of in-service training including assessment for learning, whole school inclusion, Multiple Intelligences, the Inspection Framework, interpretation of Raiseonline, Growth Mindset and Moving from Good to Outstanding. I have also led courses for governors focusing on self-evaluation and the role of the governor. I have a reputation as an experienced Headteacher and supportive School Improvement Partner. Throughout my career my commitment has been to improving the quality of teaching and learning and providing the support and challenge necessary to make fundamental school improvements. In celebration of my achievements I was invited by HRH Queen Elizabeth II to attend a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace recognising my success in schools and was invited by HRH Prince Charles to attend his home, Highgrove, in recognition of an Outstanding Ofsted Inspection.In an ever-changing environment, I have a strategic view of working towards the achievement of goals and the need to provide a framework for this which involves working in partnership with all stakeholders. I have a vision of education which provides quality and breadth to ensure a balanced and outstanding education for all children. I have completed a MA in Education at Anglia Ruskin University in Chelmsford where I achieved a distinction. I am a governor of a Chelmsford school and I also lecture part time in primary education at Anglia Ruskin University. I have been an IQM Assessor for eight years.
I’ve always worked in Primary Education, mostly in inner-city schools. I started teaching in London for three years, then got married and moved north, teaching in a boys’ preparatory school for two years (because of Local Authority ring-fencing at the time) before taking a break for two babies. During my time at home, I ran a small home nursery school accredited by social services. My girls are now mothers themselves, and I am a proud grandmother of four.I returned to teaching in Local Authority schools in Cheshire and Trafford, and obtained my first headship in a large Manchester Junior School which was about to move from its neglected Edwardian home into brand-new semi-open plan premises. Managing this change was an interesting challenge involving changing teacher attitudes as well as designing best use of space. The school was happily multicultural, with a high number of children eligible for free school meals and many with special needs. I stayed for six years.
My second headship was in a 3-11 Primary school in Gloucester which included both a Community Centre and a Children’s Centre. When I took up my post the school had been placed in Special Measures for the second time, serving a very disadvantaged and mainly White British community. With a great team to work with, we achieved a “Very Good” Ofsted verdict, and I took early retirement after nearly seven years there, getting married for the second time with the whole school attending. I am especially proud of transforming behaviour management at that school: visitors used to comment on the very good atmosphere and relationships they observed.
I enjoy painting in oils, and sold seven paintings in this year’s exhibition. My ambition is to display a painting at the Royal Academy Summer show eventually. I also give art appreciation talks: a recent one was on “Islamic Art”. My parents are in their nineties and still live in their own home close by, and I bring my 96-year old father to choir with me every week. I love my IQM school visits and work hard to stay up-to-date with new developments in education: currently I’m reading up on girls with autism. I am constantly overwhelmed by the quality of teaching and leadership that I see in schools now.
Kevin O’Neill is Principal of St. Colman’s Primary School and All Saints Nursery Unit which gained the prestigious IQM Flagship Award in 2017. Over a 16 year career Kevin has worked in schools in Manchester, Belfast, Dubai, Auckland (N.Z.), Leeds and since 2013 in Annaclone, Northern Ireland.
Kevin is a current ETI Schools Associate Inspector in Northern Ireland and holds a Masters in Catholic Schools Leadership. Kevin is an eTwinning Ambassador for the British Council and remains heavily involved in ERASMUS+ and connecting international schools through Global Learning projects. Kevin is also married to Sinead and has two young children Katie and Eabha.