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Learn Academies Trust

Learn Academies Trust

Learn-AT Central Team

Learn-AT is a school-led Trust. Collaborative professional learning and policy development  happens regularly through a range of networks including:

  • Head Teachers' Strategy Group
  • Chairs' Forum for Chairs of Local Governing Bodies
  • Curriculum and Pedagogy Group
  • Designated Safeguarding Leads Group
  • SENCO Network
  • Business Managers and Office Managers Networks
  • Faculty and Phase Networks

Personnel across the Trust, based in schools, contribute to trust-wide leadership and management, working closely with the central team.

  • Stef Edwards

    Trust Leader

    Stef was Headteacher of Great Bowden Academy for eleven years and is a designated National Leader of Education and a Founding Fellow of the Chartered College of Teaching. Stef is a primary English specialist. She is a strong advocate for the use of evidence from educational research to support high quality professional learning for teachers and school staff - to secure the best possible education for all pupils in our schools. She has a master's degree in Education Research and Inquiry and is studying for a professional doctorate, investigating the leadership of professional learning to support the development of research-informed teaching across a network of schools.

  • Steve Roddy

    Director of Education and Deputy Trust Leader

    As Headteacher at Church Langton CE Primary School Steve led the successful application to launch Learn-AT Teaching School in 2017, which continues to operate as Learn-AT Professional, and launched Learn-AT Associate Research School as part of the Education Endowment Foundation funded Research School Network in 2018. As Director of these two elements of the Trust, Steve has successfully launched a partnership with Church of England Foundation of Educational Leadership to deliver National Professional Qualifications. Steve has served on the Board of Education for Diocese of Leicester and Leicestershire Education Effectiveness Partnership, and has been a governor at five different schools. He completed his Masters in Educational Leadership in 2021. As Director of Education/ Deputy Trust Leader Steve works to improve outcomes and opportunities for all of the Trust's children.

  • Wayne Burbidge

    Director of Finance and Operations

    Wayne brings many years of experience working as a Finance Director and in other senior roles in the private sector with small and large organisations and a wise and sustainable approach to Trust development. Wayne’s breadth of experience, enthusiasm and drive to simplify and improve Learn-AT's systems such as IT, Finance and Operations is releasing our teachers and school leaders' administrative burdens and enabling them to focus on learning, the main thing.

  • Louise Wiltshire

    Finance Manager

    Louise has many years of experience as a School Business Manager. Louise supports trust finance and the operational areas of risk management, procurement, Human Resources and Health and Safety.

  • Rebecca Lillie

    Accounts Assistant

    Rebecca supports the Trust's finance team to process income and expenditure. She operates the centralised purchase ledger and handles credit card transactions for all schools.

  • Joe Bladon

    Head of Digital Strategy (Infrastructure and Innovation)

    Joe works across Learn-AT academies to build a secure and efficient network which supports both trust wide management information systems and IT for teaching and learning.

  • Phil Lawson

    1st Line Service Desk Analyst

    Phil is the first point of contact for staff when an IT issue arises within the Trust or its schools. Phil works with the IT and Network Manager to offer IT support to all staff and students.

  • Sue Benson

    Trust Information, Data and Communication Manager

    Sue is responsible for collecting and analysing data for the Trust, including staff, pupil and parent surveys and managing the Trust’s data dashboard. She also designs and produces formal communications such as the Trust prospectus, manages Trust policies and works closely with Susie to manage the Trust website and intranet. After graduating from Oxford University with a maths degree, she had a varied career working in information management and editorial roles in the non-profit and education sectors. While on a career break, volunteering to change books in her son’s Foundation Stage class led to five years as her working as a Teaching Assistant in Foundation Stage and Year 1 at Meadowdale Primary School, before becoming a Network and Communication Manager. She has worked for Learn-AT since 2017 in various communication and information management roles. In her ‘spare’ time she runs a local music charity as a volunteer and enjoys playing the cello and singing in a choir.

  • Susie Murtagh

    Trust Communication and Marketing Manager

    Susie leads on marketing and informal communications both for the Trust and for Learn-AT Professional, which provides professional learning and fellowship for staff. Amongst other things, she is responsible for social media, newsletters, market research and promotional materials, including digital and printed content, and improving staff and parental engagement. She also supports new schools joining the Trust as part of a project team. Susie has a degree in Communications and a Diploma in Executive Marketing and brings skills to the Trust from her previous communications roles in the private sector working for several large multinational companies. She joined the Trust in 2018 as an Office Manager, enabling her to gain front of house, operational experience. Outside of work her life is dominated by sport, with a houseful of ardent football fans and grassroots players. She sits on the Committee of her sons’ football club supporting their development and recently set up a ladies' netball club for like-minded players in her local area. She plays in a ‘friendly’ women’s netball league every week and often has the bruises to prove it!

  • Pippa Darbourne

    Trust Governance and Safeguarding Co-ordinator

    Pippa is responsible for organising and co-ordinating governance activities across the Trust, including ensuring that all minutes and papers from local governor and Trustee meetings are stored securely, maintaining a database of Trustees and local governors and their pecuniary interests, co-ordinating governor training, arranging clerking services for each school's local governing body and recruiting new local governors for schools.

  • Andy Blyth

    Trust Premises Manager

    Andy is responsible for overseeing premises management and as it relates to the buildings and other assets ensuring Health and Safety/ Compliance across the Trust.

  • Kully Gill

    Trust Finance and Operations Manager

  • Kate Jones

    Trust Finance and Operations Manager

  • Rebecca Hawthorne

    Trust Finance and Operations Manager

    Becky works as a Finance and Operations Manager supporting Blaby Stokes CE Primary, Red Hill Field Primary, All Saints ce Primary and Learn- AT Professional. Her role covers all things Finance as well as responsibility for Administration, Premises and HR. Becky first joined Learn-AT five years ago and prior to this spent 10 years working in the charity sector supporting Non-Maintained Special Schools for RNIB. Becky qualified in School Business Management 10 years ago and prior to this was an Office Manager. She has always enjoyed working as part of the school team and is passionate about effective systems and good customer service. Outside of work Becky enjoys time with her husband, children and her dog and loves a good camping trip in her VW Campervan!!

  • Vanessa Lingley

    Trust Finance and Operations Manager

    Vanessa has worked in education since 2009, and was Business Manager at Lubenham Primary School before Learn-AT was formed in 2016. Since then, she has covered the small schools of Lubenham, St Andrews, South Kilworth, plus Market Harborough CE Academy, as Finance & Operations Manager. She enjoys the challenge and variety of the role, overseeing finance, payroll & HR, procurement, and managing business operations such as catering, afterschool clubs and pre-schools, to ensure schools run efficiently and cost-effectively. Vanessa also looks after the chickens and the garden at Lubenham Primary School, and is keen on all things outdoors, especially camping and hillwalking. In 2014 she walked the Pennine Way with a tent and her dog!