Introducing the Education Team at Sapientia
Mr Jonathan Taylor - CEO of Sapientia Education Trust (SET). Previously he served as Principal and Executive Principal of Wymondham College, delivering record breaking ‘A’ level and GCSE outcomes, significantly improving both attainment and progress measures at GCSE and ‘A’ level. In both 2015 and 2016 Wymondham College under his leadership was the highest performing non selective state school in the eastern region. In 2017 he led the College to an ‘outstanding’ Ofsted Social care inspection, with every area evaluated as ‘outstanding.’ During his career he has worked as Vice CEO of a high performing MAT in the East Midlands; Deputy Head of an ‘outstanding’ comprehensive school; Assistant Head at a high performing state boarding school and held pastoral and departmental leadership positions. He has also worked as an Ofsted Inspector.
Jonathan was appointed a National Leader of Education (NLE) in 2016. The Good Schools Guide described his career as ‘a swift progress, leaving outstanding Ofsted reports in his wake’ and his approach as ‘thoughtful and immensely hard working - yet he hasn’t disappeared in a cloud of management initiatives, preferring lots of contact with pupils and staff.’
Mrs Zoe Fisher - Deputy CEO: Director of Education joined Sapientia Education Trust in June 2018, having been Deputy Head at Wymondham College, overseeing Safeguarding which was recognised as Outstanding during the Ofsted Boarding Inspection in 2017 and successfully lead the Sixth Form to achieve its best ever results. Before moving back to East Anglia, Zoe began her teaching career in London and quickly gained leadership roles as Head of Department, Assistant Head of Sixth Form and Director of Faculty with a strong record of raising standards. Zoe went on to be a senior leader in two schools which saw results improve under her leadership, at Key Stage 5. Zoe has also completed a Masters in Education and has always been passionate about instilling a limitless attitude to learning and achievement and collaborates enthusiastically across the SET schools to foster this mind set so that our pupils and staff believe they can all achieve.
Ms Kirsty Bray – Director of Development joined the SET in September 2016 after three years as Vice Principal for Teaching and Learning at Wymondham College. She has worked in a variety of schools and Sixth Form Colleges and has taught English, Sociology, Psychology and Government & Politics to A-Level. Kirsty undertook a Master’s Degree in Education Leadership and has a particular interest in Leadership Training and the quality assurance of Teaching and Learning. Both these key areas feature prominently in the Sapientia Teaching School Programme, which will be launched in September 2018. In addition to bid-writing (including the Primary School and Teaching School) Kirsty’s role is to continue to work with senior leaders in the SET to deliver outstanding support, guidance and opportunities for development for all our teaching staff in the Primary and Secondary sectors.
Emma Davies – Director of Primary Standards joined Sapientia Education Trust in September 2020. Prior to this she was a Headteacher in a local Norfolk school, where she led the school to achieve an Outstanding judgement under the new Ofsted framework (November 2019). Much of the success of the school was rooted in strategic leadership that embedded consistent practices which was underpinned by a collective self-efficacy.
Prior to this Emma has held many leadership roles including Deputy Headteacher, Safeguard Lead, Literacy Lead, Numeracy Lead and EYFS Lead. She is relentless in her determination to ensure all children receive a world class education and works with school by improving standards and cementing common goals that are consistent in approach, delivered through a Trust wide improvement strategy.
Rob Brewster – Director of Primary Development came to the UEA to do his PGCE in Primary education seventeen years ago and, as with many people who come to Norfolk, ended up making it his home. Since then he has worked in and with many different schools across the county, initially as an Advanced Skills Teacher in maths, and then as a CPD Lead and Acting Head of Sheringham Teaching School. In January this year, he was delighted to start work with Sapientia Education Trust.
Rob is deeply committed to working with schools in the Trust, and more widely through the Sapientia Teaching School, to support them in their professional development in order to provide excellent learning environments in which children can flourish.
Claire Fox - Safeguarding Lead joined the SET in December 2019 after four years as Safeguarding Coordinator at Wymondham College. Claire's background and expertise is in behaviour and safeguarding which has led to her working in a variety of education and training settings across the country.
Alongside working for the Trust, Claire is currently studying Forensic Psychology and is the Regional Coordinator for the National Association of Designated Safeguarding Leads. Claire is passionate about safeguarding and working with schools and Designated Safeguarding Leads across the Trust to ensure that all children are safe in school, at home and in their communities.
Mrs Catriona Mitchell – Executive Assistant to the CEO began her career in a retail management and public sector setting where she honed her customer service and administrative skills. She joined Wymondham College as the Personal Assistant to the Principal in 2001. With the formation of Sapientia Education Trust in 2016, her role was divided between the Trust and the College. However, since September 2017, her role has been exclusively as the Executive Assistant to the CEO. She sits on the SET Central Committee, and as the Executive Assistant to the CEO, she now underpins the daily running of the Sapientia Education Trust with an organised, pro-active approach. Catriona’s outstanding organisational skills enable her to facilitate the efficient management of all aspects of business support to the Trust and the CEO where her professionalism and multi-tasking capabilities shine. She has over 19 years’ experience in senior administrative and event coordination roles. She is renowned for the timely delivery of consistent and high quality documentation. She is adept at developing and maintaining processes to improve efficiency and accuracy. Using her polished communication skills and friendly, professional manner, she is the key point of contact for the Trust.
Nadine Avenal – Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Lead joined Sapientia Education Trust in 2017. She has worked as a class teacher, SENDCo and SEND Lead across a variety of settings, from small rural schools to large inner-city schools. She holds the National Award for SEN Coordination and has worked directly in many of our Trust primary schools as a SENDCo, enabling her to get to know pupils, families and staff well. With a background in psychology, she has always been passionate about providing the best education possible for all pupils, but particularly those with special educational needs. Through her strategic and supportive work with schools, Nadine strives to break down potential barriers to learning and she recognises the importance of not only supporting pupils’ academic progress but also developing their behavioural, emotional and social skills, to enable them to be confident, independent learners.
Graham Hough – Finance Director has brought his wealth of knowledge and experience to the SET to oversee the finance operation of the trust and drive change and greater efficiency in the way the trust carries out its business.
Ian Shortland – Assistant Finance Director looks after the Finance Team and is responsible for the management accounts preparation.
Jane Scott – Finance Office Manager looks after the purchase ledger for all of the Primary Schools in the Trust
Beverley Stebbings – Purchase Ledger Clerk looks after the purchase ledger for Wymondham College and the central trust.
Julie Shorten – Credit Controller looks after the invoicing and sales ledger for Wymondham College.
Imogen Howard – Cashier looks after the day to day banking and cash requirements whilst also preparing payments for all of the schools in the trust.
Governance & Estates Team
Introducing the Governance & Estates Team at Sapientia
Bob Moorhouse - Chief Operating Officer is responsible for overseeing all aspects of Finance, Estate Management, Health and Safety, Governance, HR and compliance across the Trust.
Mat Harnan - Operations Director provides support to the Trust Central Team and to Trust schools across a range of projects and oversees Trust Contracts and Procurement.
Steve Peck - Estate Manager manages the Trust Forward Maintenance Register and all aspects of estate management across Trust schools.
Chris Lloyd - Trust Health and Safety Officer provides specialist Health and Safety advice and support to all Trust schools and carries out Health and Safety inspections and investigations across Trust schools.
Wendy Maguire - Clerk to the Members and the Trust Board. Wendy is the Clerk and is able to give specialist governance advice to all Trust schools
Sarah Walker - Estates Administrator provides administrative support to the Estates Manager and oversees the Trust Estates Assets online platform.
Lee Cooper - Estates Operative carries out estate maintenance work across all Trust schools as directed by the Estates Manager.
Introducing the HR Team at Sapientia
Tina Smith - HR Director is responsible for the strategic delivery of HR and Payroll functions across the Trust and works with the CEO to develop the Trust's strategic vision on all aspects of people management. Tina was previously the HR Manager for Wymondham College and started that role in 2010.
Lauren Smith - HR Manager is responsible for supporting Headteachers and line managers across the Trust on HR matters relating to change management and HR development projects. She will also deputise for the HR Director.
Simon Jessup – HR and Payroll Systems Development Manager is responsible for the implementation and development of the iTrent HR and Payroll system across the Trust. Simon brings a wealth of experience in Payroll and iTrent Development gained from both the charity and education sector.
Kerry Folkes – Payroll Manager has been with the team since July 2019 and manages the pension and payroll function for all schools across the Trust.
Jade O’Brien – Recruitment Manager leads the team of five HR Officers and is responsible for the operational delivery of HR and recruitment support to all schools in the Trust.
Shelley Johnson - HR Advisor has recently joined the SET HR team and is responsible for supporting Headteachers and line managers across the Trust on HR matters.
Kirstin Hendrie - HR Officer works part time and is responsible for the HR support to Wymondham College Estates, Catering and Administration team, White House Farm Primary School and Stradbroke High School. Kirstin re-joined the team having previously worked in Wymondham College HR in a temporary role.
Victoria Minister – HR and Training Officer has looked after many of the schools over the last two and a half years and now has the responsibility of HR support to Wymondham College Boarding, Cleaners, Teachers and Academic Support Staff, Burston and Tivetshall and Seething and Mundham Primary Schools along with developing training material and providing training across the Trust.
Mandie Miller – HR Officer is responsible for the HR support to Old Buckenham Primary School, Old Buckenham High School, Framingham Earl High School Rockland and Surlingham Primary School and Fakenham Academy.
Katie Steinfeldt – Compliance and Audit Officer joined the Trust in a newly created role in October 2020 is responsible for ensuring that payroll and compliance information is up to date, audited and legally compliant, along with improving quality assurance across the Trust.
Sophie Baxter – HR Officer joined the team in November 2020 in a newly created role due to growth of the Trust and is responsible for HR support to Sapientia Education Trust Central team, Attleborough Academy, Ghost Hill Nursery and Infant School, Great Hockham Nursery and Primary School and Wymondham College Prep School along with supporting Wymondham College Estates and Administration teams, White House Farm Primary and Stradbroke High on a Thursday and Friday in Kirstin’s absence.