Speakers

Becky Francis

Becky Francis

Chief Executive Officer of the Education Endowment Foundation

Professor Becky Francis is Chief Executive Officer of the Education Endowment Foundation. She was previously Director of the UCL Institute of Education (IOE), which is ranked #1 in the world for education in the international QS rankings. Her prior roles include Professor of Education and Social Justice at King’s College London, Director of Education at the RSA and Standing Advisor to the Parliamentary Education Select Committee.  

Throughout her career, Becky has sought to maximise the impact of academic research by working closely with teachers and policy-makers. Becky has been a judge for the National Pupil Premium Awards and the TES Teacher of the Year awards. She has spearheaded high-profile research programmes assessing the impact of major reforms in the English school system on educational inequalities.

Becky’s academic expertise and extensive publications centre on social identities and inequalities in educational contexts. She is best known for her body of research on social identities and educational attainment, including gender, race and social class.

Laura McInerney

Laura McInerney

Education Journalist and Co-founded of Teacher Tapp

Laura started her career in east London comprehensives and taught for six years before being taken to court by Michael Gove for asking a difficult question about free schools. (She won, eventually). 
Following this, Laura became a journalist, writing a monthly column in The Guardian and editing Schools Week, where her team won national awards for their hard-hitting scoops. 
She is now the co-founder of Teacher Tapp, an app revealing previously unknown insights about teachers’ lives.

Stephen Tierney

Stephen Tierney

Chair of Head Teacher Roundtable

Stephen was Headteacher of St. Mary's an 11-18 school for thirteen years before becoming the Executive Headteacher of the school and of a one form entry primary school.  These schools formed a cross phase multi-academy trust, with one other primary school, which he led until recently.  His work sought to develop a culture in which staff, children and young people could flourish.  At the heart of this was the professional development of teachers and a more evidence-informed approach to school improvement.  His work in Blackpool rooted him in the daily practicalities of teachers’ and leaders’ lives. 

He is Chair of the Headteachers' RoundTable Group; leading on their policy ideas for an alternative to the current high stakes, cliff-edged accountability system. 

As a prolific blogger (www.leadinglearner.me) he writes on a range of topical educational issues.  The core school business of teaching & learning and leadership are the main themes on his blog.  He’s on twitter as @LeadingLearner and is author of Educating with Purpose & Liminal Leadership.

Paul Whiteman

Paul Whiteman

General Secretary, NAHT

Paul Whiteman took over as General Secretary of NAHT in September 2017.  NAHT represents the majority of school leaders in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Paul leads all of NAHT’s campaigns to improve schools for everyone, including the campaigns to achieve a fair funding settlement for schools, improving the systems of accountability and improving the recruitment and retention of teachers and leaders. 

Prior to taking over as general secretary, Paul was NAHT’s director of representation and advice, a post he held for five years. The representation and advice team includes regional officers, organisers, the advice team and the legal team, helping to promote NAHT’s voice across the country while providing highly-regarded assistance and protection to members when needed.

Before joining NAHT, Paul spent a decade as a national official at the FDA, the union for civil servants. He has a first-class grasp of education issues as well as many years’ experience in the wider trade union movement.

Matt Hood

Matt Hood

Principal at Oak National Academy

Matt is the Principal at Oak National Academy. He is also an independent adviser on educator professional development at the Department for Education and a founder at Ambition Institute - one of the largest providers of educator development in England.

Matt is also a trustee at The Brilliant Club, Chair of Governors at Bay Leadership Academy in Morecambe and convener at researchEd Home. He is a former teacher, school leader and charity director.