Helen taught for 32 years in a variety of secondary schools in Rotherham, Wakefield and Essex. She held a wide range of roles including ‘acting headship’.
In 2006 she returned North to take up a post as a school improvement officer in Bradford specialising in working with schools facing challenging circumstances and developing leadership capacity in schools. This lasted until March 2015 (9 years). During her time at Bradford, Helen specifically supported Wyke Manor (now Appleton) as school improvement partner moving the school from SM to satisfactory; Immanuel College (from SM to good), Queensbury (from SM to Satisfactory with good leadership), and Feversham College from (Good to outstanding).
In 2011 as part of this role, the secondary heads in Bradford requested that the Local Authority second Helen to act as the Operational Director for the newly formed Bradford Secondary Partnership. In this role, Helen project managed all the work of the Partnership including coordinating the successful and rigorous self-review programme which all secondary schools in Bradford now participate. In this role, Helen participated in over 150 school reviews led by OFSTED ex-HMIs or active inspectors. Helen also led the leadership development work embedding the NCTL system leadership programmes and Teaching Leaders work in the City. As part of her Bradford Secondary Partnership work, Helen also brokered and directly provided emergency school leadership support for Kings, Laisterdyke and Tong High school.
On retirement from this role in April 2015, Helen established her own company specialising in advising secondary schools,
with a particular emphasis on providing support to senior and middle leaders and acting as the external consultant for governors who are carrying out Headteacher appraisal and assisting in the appointment of headteachers. Currently she is undertaking project work around boosting recruitment and developing leadership. She has also served as a governor on two school boards.
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