International Principal's Workshop - Liverpool, Uk
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Faculty of UK Conference
» Prof Derek Colquhoun (Head of Research, University of Hull)
» Dr Nick Owen
» Steven John Peach
» Chris May - Chief Executive Curious Minds
» Don Williamson
» Jatinder Verma
» Damian Allen
Prof Derek Colquhoun (Head of Research, University of Hull)

Derek Coluqhoun was the first Professor of Urban Learning in the UK. He is a secondary teacher by training. After completing his PhD at the University of Queensland Derek went on to teach and research at several universities in England and Australia. He has led many research projects and has deliberately traversed the boundary between education and health. He has supervised many PhD students in a range of areas and has published widely in both health and education. He has edited two postgraduate texts on research methodology and often runs workshops on building research capacity.

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Dr Nick Owen

"Dr. Nick Owen has worked in the arts and creative industries for 20 years as producer, director and educator. He was first Head of Community Arts of the internationally renowned Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (LIPA) between 1994 and 2002 where he led the B.A. (Honors) in Community Arts. He also initiated and developed the UK’s first full time performing arts course in H.E. for Disabled People. He is now Director of the Aspire Trust, an independent arts education organisation which provides arts and creative knowledge, services and expertise to a range of clients and customers from across the world. As lead researcher within the Trust he leads the reseach on Closing Schools for the Future: a research programme which aims to examine what is lost from a school community in the final stages of a programme of school closure. He is also currently editing Developing Creative Curriculum: Innovative Teachers at Work for Routledge and writing a chapter for the forthcoming Routledge International Handbook of Creative Learning.

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Steven John Peach

Has worked in education for over 30 years, been a Headteacher for over 10 years and is currently Head of The Oldershaw School in Wallasey. Throughout his involvement in education he has focussed on achievement, creativity and care; believing in social and academic inclusion. He has underpinned this with an outstanding National reputation for care and support that places Every Child Matters at the heart of an aspirational education. Oldershaw was selected as a lead school for the national Curious Minds programme and is the Change school for Wirral. The 14-19 education agenda is also a strong interest as a Board member of the Merseyside Learning and Skills Council 2005-9 and a member of the Wirral Strategic Board 2005-10.

He is passionate about E Learning and has worked closely with the E Learning Foundation on a range of educational projects including developing the Digital Citizen and more recently harnessing IPhone technology. The school is now an Apple Regional Training Centre and a National Centre of Excellence for Business and Enterprise. The school has also received a number of National awards including: Artsmark Gold, Sportsmark, Excellence for Inclusion and Specialist Schools Most Improved Schools Award 2009.

Following a recent excellent Ofsted Inspection in which the Leadership and Management of Oldershaw was judged to be outstanding he has been invited to join the National College for Leadership of Schools Consultant Head and Local Leaders in Education programmes. Ofsted said of the school, “The excellent curriculum leads to outstanding progress in a highly caring community that ensures every student succeeds” Community development and involvement in the school are important aspects of Steven’s work and he is particularly proud of his role in creating Aspire Educational Trust a charity still based at Oldershaw.

In addition to his work in schools he has worked with Liverpool University, Liverpool John Moore’s University and Liverpool Hope University to develop future teachers, with the AimHigher Programme and through the Convocations. He was Chair of Wirral Excellence in Cities Programme 2002-4 and was a Director of the the Music Development Agency on Merseyside 2007-9. For the past 3 years he has been involved with the DCSF initiative Unlocking the talent of young people and presented at the National Conference in 2008. He is a strong supporter of the National Museums, Libraries and Archives and Oldershaw is currently involved in planning the education programme for the new Liverpool Museum of Life on the waterfront. He is particularly proud his home city of Liverpool and was delighted to be involved with the Capital of Culture in 2008 and continues to be an ambassador for the City.

Steven enjoys travelling, good food and wine, cultural events and all types of sport. In the past he played semi professionally and is a lifelong devoted Everton Football Club supporter.

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Chris May - Chief Executive Curious Minds

Since graduating from the Drama Department at Bristol University in 1981, Chris has worked as a teacher, youth worker, project manager and consultant in a diverse range of educational and community settings. He is passionately committed to developing the capacity of disadvantaged young people to realise their creative potential and campaigns to place culture and creativity at the heart of learning.

Moving to Lancashire in 1989, Chris worked as an arts management consultant throughout the North West, helping organisations develop their practice around learning, evaluation and change management. In 2003 he joined Arts Council England, North West as Social Inclusion Officer and moved to Creative Partnerships East Lancashire as Creative Director in 2005. During 2007/8 Chris worked with Creative Partnerships National Office as Interim Director of Schools Programmes, returning to Lancashire in January 2009 to lead the development of Curious Minds – a new organisation committed to enabling creative collaboration. Curious Minds works principally across Lancashire and Merseyside, delivering the Creative Partnerships programme in over 170 schools, supporting the Find Your Talent programme in Liverpool and Bolton and providing a range of creative and cultural programmes with a wide variety of partners.

As well as enabling others to find ways of developing and expressing their passions, Chris is passionate himself about painting, making music, growing and cooking.

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Don Williamson

Don Williamson is a former Head teacher in the Wirral of some 30 years standing. He currently works as School Workforce advisor for the Wirral LEA. His key functions are to promote and support a coherent and strategic approach with the local authority to the reform, modernisation and development of the whole school workforce; to continuously develop and promote the availability of effective training and development for the whole school workforce, having regard for the ECM and Extended School Agenda; and to mange a school workforce organisation team in order to secure a set of deliverable indentified to provide an overarching structure for school workforce reform.

This has involved him establishing links with related sectors, initiative and programmatic ensure the development of the whole school workforce contributes to the reform and development of the children workforce in line with the children workforce strategy; developing a coherent strategy for the CPD of the whole school workforce which supports the development of the workforce remodelling and the extended schools agenda; the review of existing provision of training and development across the authority for all the schools in the Wirral; the promotion of the provision of effective training and development for the whole school workforce; the establishment of systems to provide an overview of skill gaps and priorities of the service and to ensure this is communicated to the TDA to inform the development of national priorities and to work closely with the Remodelling Advisor / the Well Being Co-ordinator, the Extended School Remodelling Advisor and the School Effectiveness team to facilitate the further development of their support role in schools.

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Jatinder Verma

Jatinder Verma is co-founder and Artistic Director of Tara Arts, the pioneering cross-cultural theatre company which marked its 30th year in 2007 with a critically-acclaimed production of The Tempest. The company tours nationally and internationally, and co-producers with Tara include the National Theatre.

Jatinder first worked at the National in 1989, with his acclaimed version of Molière’s Tartuffe. This was followed by a production of the Sanskrit classic, The Little Clay Cart and then Cyrano de Bergerac, in a version by Ranjit Bolt. In 2009, he directed Hanif Kureishi’s The Black Album, in a joint NT-Tara production.

In 2002 he produced Journey to the West for Tara, a trilogy of plays which traced the story of Asian migration and settlement in the West over the 20th century. Based on oral testimonies given by three generations of Asians living and working in Britain today, the trilogy toured cities in the UK as a major day-long event.

Author of The Story of Diwali, a book for children, Jatinder has also published several articles exploring the nature of modern cross-culturalism. His frequent work on Radio and TV includes the Sony Award winning Ashes to the Ganges and the 3-part serialisation (with Claudia Mayer) of The Mahabharata (both for BBC Radio 4).

Jatinder holds Honorary Doctorates from York, Exeter and Leicester De Montfort Universities.

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Damian Allen

Damian Allen is Executive Director of Children and Family Services for Knowsley Council.

Through BSF, Knowsley has investing £250m to radically transform its secondary education system, opening seven state of the art ‘Centres for Learning’ during 2009-10. Knowsley have also recently commissioned an independent ‘Commission on the Lives of Young People in Knowsley’ to inform future policy and service development.

Damian is interested in developing family policy and child poverty, and has establishing a Knowsley Child Poverty Programme. He is participating in the Global Education Leaders’ Program which is an international coalition of education system leaders, global consultants and leading practitioners committed to building, accelerating and sustaining real education transformation at local, national, and global levels.

Prior to becoming a Local Authority Officer, he was an Assistant Principal in a Sixth Form College and before that a secondary school science teacher.

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