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Leadership

Mr T Bowles

CEO

Mr Bowles began his teaching career in Bedfordshire, and has taught across the Midlands, from Leicestershire, Coventry, Wolverhampton and Dudley Local Authorities. He also taught in Buenos Aires, Argentina as Director of Sport just after the turn of the century 2000-2002.

Having been in the teaching profession into his 3rd decade, he also spent 8 years in the Army from the age of 17 and became an Army Commando (Green Beret) at the age of 21. On leaving the Armed Forces he developed his own business in wholesale/retail before entering the teaching profession. He has travelled extensively throughout the world and has a real passion for not just developing young people educationally but also to offer unique opportunities.

The Invictus Education Trust was formed in order to work together to spread such educational success across other local schools which shared the same aspirations for their pupils.

Although educational attainment is at the head of Invictus, it is not the whole of it: a valuable part of the vision is the pupils gain experiences which develop them as worthwhile individuals, such as opportunities for music, performance, educational visits, and extra-curricular activities such as sailing and astronomy, of particular note is the Cadet Force, now established in 4 of the 6 Trust schools.

 

Mrs J Duern

Chief Operating Officer

Mrs K Cocker

Chief Finance Officer

Mrs Cocker qualified as a Chartered Public Sector accountant in 1987 and has specialised in Local Government finance for the whole of her working career.

Immediately prior to joining Invictus Education Trust in 2017 she worked at Dudley Council for 31 years, specialising in Education Finance including leading and managing the Accountancy Traded Service to schools across the Dudley Borough. Mrs Cocker was also a Corporation Governor at Halesowen College for 4 years.

Mrs Cocker has a wealth of experience in the funding of schools and colleges, both locally and nationally, and hold an interest in the education sector generally.

 

Mrs S Carroll-Grigg

Strategic Lead Standards

Mrs Carroll-Grigg completed a BA Hons degree in Glass with Ceramics, 3D Design at Sunderland Polytechnic, now Sunderland University. After finishing her degree she spent five years working in the sales, marketing and graphic design industry. The lure of worldwide travel came next before she decided that teaching was the career for her. Mrs Carroll-Grigg completed a PGCE in Art and Design education at the University of Central England in Birmingham.

Following a successful PGCE experience Mrs Carroll-Grigg began working in a large Dudley secondary school as a teacher of Art and Design. During this time her passion for art and design evolved into a broader teaching and learning focus. Initially she supported primary liaison as part of the pastoral team for four years before taking up the role of Head of Art. After a successful period at middle leadership Mrs Carroll-Grigg took up the role of Assistant Faculty Director within a large Design Faculty. Throughout this time she also worked for the University of Wolverhampton as a professional tutor for trainee teachers, moderated for OCR examination Board and was part of the design team for the 2008 GCSE Art and Design specification. At this time Dudley LA invited her to be a learning coach to support teaching and learning across Dudley schools. In 2007 she became an Advanced Skills Teacher for Dudley LA supporting a range of teachers and secondary school leaders in planning and delivering high quality provision within local schools whilst maintaining her role as a teacher of Art and Design.

In 2010 Mrs Carroll-Grigg began working at Crestwood School as an Assistant Headteacher as senior lead for Teaching and Learning. Driving and developing high standards of T&L through effective pedagogy and practice has underpinned Mrs Carroll-Grigg’s career to date. In September 2018 the opportunity to become the Curriculum and Standards Deputy at Crestwood School and also Secondary Lead for Standards across the Invictus MAT was an exciting career development. This new role is rapidly developing through strong partnerships within Invictus and beyond.

 

Central Support Team

Amy Buttery

Executive PA

Ben Cash

Central Network Manager

Aimee Clarke

Finance Officer

Dan Elwell

Executive Network Manager

Helen Fowler

Finance Assistant

Rebecca Lippitt

Central Services Assistant

Dave Morris

Executive Network Manager

Sarah Shakeshaft

Finance Officer

Manjit Singh

Central Network Manager

Subject Directors

Mr C Gillespie

Director of Humanities

Mr Gillespie was born in Derby and after completing A Levels, attended the University of Wolverhampton and Birmingham University to gain his Teaching qualification and History Degree.

Following time spent producing cartoons for Prospect Magazine and producing interactive resources for English Heritage’s education website, Mr Gillespie joined Leasowes High School in 2004 to teach History.

Since 2012, Mr Gillespie has led the Humanities department successfully overseeing changes to the curriculum and exam specifications across the three subjects. Leasowes has since introduced 6th Form, and History department has been proud to deliver A Levels and hope to deliver Geography and RS in the future.

Mr Gillespie believes that Humanities subjects are vital to students understanding of the world around them, how they can support it and vital to the understanding of people in the world and how we can work together. As the father of an autistic child, Mr Gillespie is a strong advocate of providing support and guidance to allow students of all abilities to access the courses we provide. Special Needs should not mean students cannot get a wide and fulfilling provision in school.

Alongside curriculum work, Mr Gillespie leads a games club in school. This is an opportunity for students and staff from all backgrounds to come together to share experiences not based on the school subjects. This had led to teams being involved in Warhammer National Competitions. Games Club has provided huge support for academic learning and developing and succeeding in new activities helps build character and leadership skills.

Mr Gillespie has been proud to mentor students during their PGCE and ITT training courses, and happy that many have gone on to take leadership roles, within Invictus and across the country. Working with trainees allows departments to access the latest thinking and training from universities and brings fresh ideas and perspectives to the humanities team. Mr Gillespie keeps links with many of his former PGCE students as it provides vital ongoing development and information about changes in education across many different schools.

 

Mrs J Hanson

Director of Science

Mrs Hanson was born at Wordsley hospital in Stourbridge. She attended The Earls High School and Halesowen College before completing her degree and teaching qualifications. She holds a BSc hons degree in Biology from Coventry University.

Mrs Hanson began her teaching career in a large school in Sandwell where she worked for 11 years. At that school she progressed quite rapidly holding various roles throughout her time there including; co-ordinating intervention strategies and exams, Head of Social Science, Raising achievement co-ordinator for KS5, Head of Faculty for Science and Lead Teacher.

In 2015 she joined Ounsdale High School as part of the schools Leadership team and took on the role as an Assistant Headteacher for Science. In June 2016 she was appointed as Director of Science for the Invictus Education Trust.

Educating children and young people has always been an ambition for Mrs Hanson and it’s because of this passion and drive that she hopes to steer the 5 Invictus schools through the changes to the Science curriculum successfully.

She is a firm believer in the following quote. ‘Education is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world’ – Nelson Mandela.

 

Miss R Hatton

Director of Sport

After having completed a Bachelor’s degree in Sports, Physical Education and Coaching Sciences from the University of Birmingham, Miss Hatton went on to complete her Postgraduate Certificate Education (PGCE) in Physical Education at Newman University College. During this period, Miss Hatton completed a substantial amount of NGB qualifications, adding to her specialisms in Swimming and Athletics.

During her time at University, Miss Hatton taught English and Physical Education in schools across Uganda and South Africa. This enabled her to complete her TEFL qualification and also sparked her passion for travel.

Miss Hatton joined Crestwood School in 2011 and has held a number of roles including Heads of Year both 7, 8 and 9, Duke of Edinburgh coordinator, and Gifted & talented coordinator.

In 2017, Miss Hatton went on to complete her Masters Degree in Special and Inclusive Education.

Miss Hatton is also on the committee for the Dudley Amateur Sports Association (DAGS), this has enabled her to support the development of girls’ sports in the Dudley area.

Outside of school, Miss Hatton still actively plays Netball and Rugby.

Miss Hatton believes that sports can be one of the biggest facilitators in education, and sporting opportunities are so important to students. Sport and Physical Education experience and exposure have a direct impact and correlation with sport and physical activity in later life.

 

Miss E Hoare

Director of MFL

Miss Hoare was born in Stourbridge and went to Perryfields High School. It was during this time that she found her passion for languages when she took part in three exchanges to Lyon with a French family. She is still in contact with them and sees them regularly.

After her GCSEs she went on to study Maths, History and French A levels at King Edwards VI form college in Stourbridge and then went to Manchester University to study European Studies with French.
As part of her degree she spent one of the best years of her life as an English assistant in a school in Commercy, a small town in the North-East of France. This made her realise that she wanted to teach children and share her passion of languages with them.

Miss Hoare completed her PGCE at Birmingham University and has taught ever since – starting her career at Cradley High and subsequently joining Leasowes in 2002 where she worked her way up to be Head of Department.

Miss Hoare strongly believes that the best way to learn a language is to interact with people from that country, which is why she encourages school trips to be a part of the curriculum and has organised communication with French students through letter writing, social media and visits to each other’s schools. These are links that she will actively be building upon in the future.

 

Miss J Kendrick

Director of Invictus Sixth Form

Miss Kendrick was born in Sheffield and after completing A Levels, attended the University of Wales, Cardiff.

Following a prolonged gap year working in Switzerland and USA, Miss Kendrick began her teaching career in Kent where she worked for 5 years, progressing to Head of Department in her second year at the school.

In 1998, she joined Ounsdale High School as Head of Design and Technology, leading a team of 10 staff and successfully overseeing the KS3, 4 and 5 curriculum and DT teacher training with the West Midlands Consortium. Following this, as Head of Sixth Form at Ounsdale High School, Miss Kendrick joined the senior leadership team leading the Sixth Form for 8 years and then whole school Teaching and Learning for 2 years.

Since the introduction of Invictus Sixth Form in September 2015, Miss Kendrick was delighted to be made Director and is passionate about providing the very best post 16 provision for students within the 5 Invictus schools as well as for students from further afield.

 

Miss R Ward

Director of English

Miss Ward was born in West Bromwich and completed her BA (Honours) in English at The University of Birmingham between 2002 – 2006. She has spent most of her teaching career at Ellowes Hall Sport College, eleven years so far, moving from Key Stage Three leader for English to Assistant Headteacher. Miss Ward’s passion for Literature was ignited when studying Blake’s Songs of Innocence and Experience in Sixth Form but she always knew she wanted to be a teacher from an early age.

Miss Ward is an examiner for Pearson and AQA GCSE English Language and an active member of N.A.T.E (The National Association for the Teachers of English.) In 2011, Miss Ward completed her NPQML course before leading an English department for the first time. She is committed to driving progress and achievement in all students.

In her spare time, Miss Ward likes to scuba dive, run marathons and hike mountains, travelling to over 50 countries so far.

Miss Ward is delighted to take on the new role of Subject Director role across the Invictus Trust as of September 2018.

 

Mr P Wingate

Director of Performance/Music

Mr Wingate is a native of the New Forest and went to school in Dorset. He started playing the piano at the age of 7 and learned the flute whilst at school. He joined the army at the age of 16 as a junior bandsman, where he trained at Bovington and latterly at Kneller Hall studying classical Saxophone and Piano.

After leaving the army Mr Wingate worked as a session musician playing in bands throughout Europe, he also started working as a music teacher in a German music school as well as becoming head of woodwind for Service Children’s Schools in Germany, also gaining a Certificate in music education from Trinity College London.

In 1997 Mr Wingate went to UCE/Birmingham conservatoire where he completed his music education degree. Mr Wingate has lived in Birmingham ever since playing in professional bands ranging between ska/punk to folk and has performed on several occasions at Glastonbury festival of performing arts. In addition to instrumental music, he has sought to make singing an important part of curriculum work as well as aspects of world music such as Samba, Folk music and African drumming.

Mr Wingate has taught music in Dudley since 1999.

 

Board of Trustees

Mr G Marsh

Chair of the Board

Mr Marsh has been a Governor at Ellowes Hall Sports College for over 30 years and Chair of Governors for more than 20 years.

Mr Marsh is a highly regarded and successful local businessman. He initially worked as an auditor and was a practising accountant. His two daughters attended Ellowes Hall. One is a Fellow of Chartered Accountants at PWC and the other is Chief Executive of a Foundation Hospital, Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

The last two Ofsted reports have specifically praised governors and Mr Marsh in particular.

Mr L Evans

Vice Chair of the Board

Mr Evans is a highly qualified Industrial Chemist – now retired.

Governor at Ellowes Hall Sports College for 30 years including Vice-Chair for the past 10 as well as Chair of Staffing Committee and Teaching & Learning Committee. Mr Evans is also a governor at a neighbouring primary school. He was asked to contribute to the Headteacher’s NPQH. He was instrumental to helping with the Methodist Synod held at the school.

Mr W Caldwell

Member of the Board

Mr Caldwell holds a City and Guilds technical qualification in radio and television electronics – gained many years ago!

His work experience has been mainly in working with people – in Radio programme production; Theatre Stage Management; and Church leadership and pastoral care.

Mr R Westwood

Trustee/Finance Director

Mr Westwood was born in Lower Gornal and went to school in Sedgley before going to Manchester University and then to Birmingham University. He has lived in Wombourne since 1991 and is now Managing Director of Marston’s Beer Company based at the Bank’s Brewery in Wolverhampton. He is married with four children. He has been a Governor at Ounsdale High School for 24 years and the last five as Chair of Governors.

Mr R Dimmock

Trustee

Mr Dimmock has strong connections with the local area, having grown up and lived within the area his whole life.

He joined the West Midlands Police in 1972 as a police cadet becoming a regular officer in 1975 and retired from the force in 2005 at the rank of Inspector. He gained experience in the uniform, C.I.D. Police Communication Centre and Criminal Justice Unit roles.

Upon retirement from the police service Bob was appointed to a civilian role within the police to oversee change management within the forces call handling and customer contact centres.

In 2007 Mr Dimmock became Performance and Commissioning Manager for DMBC’s Community Safety Team where he implemented and supported the crime reduction and substance misuse strategies of local partners. He was a member of the local Police and Crime Board advising on commissioning decisions and he also managed Community Safety performance indicators, service level agreements and contracts.

Mr Dimmock retired from DMBC in 2015 and now plays an active role in The Crestwood School and was recently appointed Chair of Governors in January 2017. He is also the chair of the B J Concert Band, a local community band where he indulges in his passion of playing the saxophone. His other interests include golf and horticulture. He is currently studying for a diploma in Landscape Design.

Mr Dimmock is married and has a daughter and a son who are both serving police officers.

Mrs G Withers

Trustee

Mrs Withers has been married for 45 years, has two Children and five grandchildren. Upon leaving college, Gill trained as a nurse. When her children were young, she then went on to train as a dental nurse. When Mrs Withers’ husband started his own business she joined him to help with his accounting.

She has been a school governor for 41 years, at both Hurst Green Primary School and Leasowes High School. Mrs Withers has been the Chair of Governors at Leasowes High School for nearly thirty years, and is also Chair of Finance at Hurst Green Primary.

Mrs Withers is a member of the Schools Forum at Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council.

Mrs Withers also volunteers for two-three days a week at Hurst Green Primary School.

Mr J Harris

Trustee

Mr Harris has qualifications in law and health service management in which he has been employed for over 50 years and still does in a part time capacity. He is a Rotarian and also chairs the board of Compton Hospice Ltd. He is also chair of governors of Kinver High School. He runs a breakfast club for in-house legal advisers to hospitals and associated health organisations. Mr Harris is chairman of the Codsall Community Arts Festival Association which exists to provide a biennial festival of the arts to Codsall and surrounding villages although their audiences come from far away for certain events.

Mr Harris and his wife enjoy getting away from time to time abroad. More locally, they are fond of visiting the Royal Shakespeare Theatre Repertory Company.

Mr C Cartwright

Trustee

Mrg Cartwright is a former Ellowes Hall student and has been as governor at Ellowes Hall Sports College for 12 years. Has worked extensively in industry as Metallurgist, Research Scientist and is currently Quality Assurance Manager at a Shropshire based aluminium rolling facility. Keen on sport, particularly playing cricket and is a ECB level 2 qualified cricket coach, coaching and managing youth teams at a local cricket club.

Mr R Evans

Trustee

Mr Evans has been a school governor for many years, serving on the boards of primary and secondary schools. He is currently chair of governors at Pedmore High School, and has previously been a primary school chair.

Mr Evans is a graduate chartered chemical engineer now retired. His working life was spent in various technical and managerial roles with an international chemical company.

The father of 3 children and now grandfather to 5 grandchildren Mr Evans is passionate about ensuring that standards in our schools are not only maintained but continuously improved.

Personal interests include sport, particularly rugby union, and travel.