Speaker profiles

Adam Hollyhead is principal of Ocker Hill Academy in Tipton, Sandwell, where he has been for 16 years. He has taught for 30 years and has been a headteacher in two different schools, in two different local authorities.
Alastair Gittner is research lead at Hallam Teaching School Alliance and leads their work as the recently appointed Sheffield Associate Research School. Alastair has been a science teacher for over 25 years and has always had an interest in research informed practice. As well as delivering training and CPD for the Teaching School and Research School, Alastair has been one of the lead developers in SMART Spaces; a revision strategy for GCSE science which is currently under trial with the EEF. Despite all this Alastair also finds time to oversee the Teaching School’s other research projects including an IEE innovation project in Mastery English.
Alicia Shaw is innovation and evaluation lead at the IEE. She works closely with schools, supporting them to disseminate research evidence, engage in evidence-based teaching and learning, and facilitate the development of pilot projects. Before taking on this post Alicia worked in schools for 10 years, both as a classroom teacher and an educational psychologist.
Dale Banham is deputy headteacher at Northgate High School in Ipswich. He is responsible for the curriculum, CPD and teaching and learning. Dale teaches history and is an honorary fellow of the Schools History Project. He has delivered training on how to raise attainment in history for many schools and local education authorities. Dale has published a number of articles in Teaching History and continues to write and edit GCSE History textbooks for Hodder Education.
Emma Buckley is a senior lead practitioner at Highfields School, Wolverhampton with 24 years’ classroom experience. An English specialist, Emma has taught across Key Stages 3 to 5 in schools in Lincolnshire, Rochdale and Wolverhampton. As part of the lead practitioner team, Emma leads on challenge and provision for more-able students, as well as supporting colleagues in developing their practice within the classroom, and researches and implements evidence-based teaching and learning through staff training and CPD. Her research, which focused on evaluating the effectiveness of Self- Regulated Strategy Development as a writing intervention at Key Stage 3, has been a challenging- yet highly illuminating process.
Emma Sutherland is an assistant programme manager in Nesta’s Education team. She previously worked in Nesta’s Research, Analysis and Policy team, where she co-authored ‘Reclaiming the Smart City: Personal Data, Trust and the New Commons’, a report for the EU Commission’s Horizon 2020 DECODE project.

Prior to Nesta, Emma worked as an intern and consultant for UNESCO’s International Institute for Educational Planning in Paris, where her work focused on measuring education quality and international assessment tools. She also spent three years working as a secondary school English teacher in Canberra and was an associate in the Teach for Australia programme.

Foye Weatherhead decided, after five years in the cut-throat world of management consultancy, to follow her heart and become a history teacher. Eighteen years later she has no regrets. She has held various middle leadership posts, academic and pastoral, and is now assistant headteacher with responsibility for curriculum design and integration at Greenshaw High School, a large mixed comprehensive in South London. She is also assistant director of the newly-established Greenshaw Research School. Outside of school, Foye plays and coaches hockey and attempts to raise her two children.
James Baalham is currently progress director for Year 8 and transition at Northgate High School, Ipswich. James has been a physical education teacher, head of year and lead practitioner for over 12 years. He has a keen interest in collaborative learning, raising boys’ achievement and strategies which can help to support disadvantaged students. Coming from a sport science background, James has become increasingly interested in the impact evidence-based practice can have upon teaching and learning and this led to him developing, running and evaluating the IEE innovation project at Northgate.
John Coats is director of school improvement at Notre Dame High School, Sheffield and Director of Hallam Teaching School Alliance – a cohort 1 teaching school that has gone on to establish the Sheffield SCITT, the South Yorkshire Maths Hub and a growing research role including running three IEE Innovation Evaluation projects and being the delivery partner for an EEF and Wellcome Trust funded national RCT. John has held several senior leadership roles that have given him a wide range of expertise, including responsibility for timetabling and curriculum design, holding the role of Designated Safeguarding Lead and responsibility for Student Progress and Data. Originally an Oxbridge graduate, John has been in the teaching profession for fifteen years, is a pupil premium reviewer, and importantly remains a passionate mathematician and classroom teacher.
Jonathan Haslam is the director of the Institute for Effective Education and has been working for the last ten years to help practitioners and policy makers use research evidence in practice. He is the editor of Best Evidence in Brief, the IEE’s e-newsletter, which is published each fortnight, and goes to 5,000 subscribers in the UK, nearly 15,000 subscribers in the US, and now has editions in Spanish and Chinese. He has been the lead for the IEE on numerous research-engagement projects, including the Research Schools Network, Evidence for the Frontline, and the Literacy Octopus.
Karen Wespieser is director of operations at Driver Youth Trust. Karen’s background is in social research and she has worked in the education sector for twenty years. Most recently, she was head of impact at the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) and director of the Centre for Education Economics (CfEE). She is passionate about increasing and communicating the use of evidence in education to positively impact the lives of young people. Karen is also a school governor, trustee of education charity Parentkind, and founder of #UKEdResChat.
Lisa Whitworth is a teacher, specialist leader in education and the senior project lead for the Building Resilient Learners project funded by the NESTA Future Ready Fund, based at Sidmouth College. She has led several other evaluations, including the IEE funded Innovation Evaluation and the DfE Character Education Grant. Lisa has over 20 years of experience in education, research and evaluation, middle and senior leadership, nine of which have been teaching and leading science, PSHE, and health and social care.

Lisa believes that all students should have access to the best education, regardless of their circumstances, that this education should not just be the receipt of academic qualifications, it should provide each young person with the skills, character and abilities to lead a flourishing life beyond the school gates.

Mohamed Cusworth-Yafai is the Director of Shireland Research School. He has been teaching and leading learning for 15 years in both primary and secondary phases. Mo’s main areas of expertise are curriculum design and technology enhanced learning. He is currently studying for a master’s degree in educational leadership.
Sarah Seleznyov has worked in London schools for over 25 years. She has been a deputy head, a school improvement consultant and still works as a school improvement partner. Before leading the alliance, she worked at The London Centre for Leadership in Learning, UCL Institute of Education, where she designed and led a range of research-informed programmes for school leaders and teacher enquiry projects. She also acted as a facilitator on the National Professional Qualification for Executive Leaders.

During her career, Sarah has also worked for the Fischer Family Trust and the National Literacy Trust. She is a specialist maths tutor on the Cognitive Acceleration research project based at King’s College University www.letsthink.org.uk.

Sarah’s research specialism is Japanese lesson study, and she has published widely on the use of lesson study outside Japan. She is a member of the Collaborative Lesson Research UK group.

Theresa Gooda has been teaching secondary English for over twenty years in Sussex, London and Australia. She is a regional coordinator for NATE (National Association for Teachers of English), and Sussex group leader for the National Writing Project. She is a current doctoral student investigating reading pedagogy at the University of Sussex, and part-time ghost-writer.

Featured news

  1. IEE closing from December

    Posted on 2 December 2020

    The Institute for Effective Education will be closing from 4 December 2020. All staff are being made …

Latest news

  1. IEE closing from December

    Posted on 2 December 2020

    The Institute for Effective Education will be closing from 4 December 2020. All staff are being made …

  2. Applications now open for new round of LbQ innovation evaluation project grants

    Posted on 4 March 2020

    Applications are now open for the second round of Learning by Questions (LbQ) innovation evaluation …