Mike Younger – Chair
Mike Younger is a Trust Chair. He has extensive experience in teacher education and in gender studies. He was Dean of Education and Head of the University of Cambridge Faculty of Education 2006-2011, having previously been Director of Teaching and of Teacher Education. Whilst Director of the Teacher Education programme, 1992-2001, he led the Faculty through three very successful Ofsted inspections which resulted in the programmes being awarded ‘outstanding’ status. His main research and teaching interests are located in teacher education and in teacher professional development, in gender studies and in school leadership and curriculum development. He co-directed, with Molly Warrington, a UK-government sponsored project on Raising Boys Achievement within inclusive contexts, a project which led to a highly influential report, two major books (Raising Boys’ Achievements in Primary Schools: towards a holistic approach, and Raising Boys’ Achievement in Secondary Schools: issues, dilemmas and opportunities, and over twenty mainstream research publications. More recently, Mike was Director of the University’s Centre of Commonwealth Education, which involved him in co-directing projects based in East Africa on the retention of girls into secondary schooling, developing teacher education programmes in Tanzania and Namibia, and working with governments in the Caribbean, to develop communities of practice to enhance in-service education for teachers and education professionals. In 2012, he took responsibility as lead consultant for the Faculty in establishing a new Graduate School of Education at Nazarbayev University, Kazakhstan, and in leading an initial teacher education project, aimed at transforming teacher education in Kazakhstan.
Nitesh Gor – CEO (OBE)
Nitesh Gor (OBE) is Chief Executive of the Trust. His experience encompasses CEO and director roles across the exploration, management consultancy and investment banking industries. He is a published author and has a broad business strategy background gained as a result of working for two leading corporate strategy consultancies and as an independent advisor to corporate boards. His primary corporate focus is on leadership, strategy and entrepreneurship. Nitesh has an MBA from London Business School and an undergraduate degree from the University of London. He is a Deputy Lieutenant with the Greater London Lieutenancy and was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List of 2018 for Services to Education.
Gerry Davies – Trust Director (OBE)
Gerry Davis (OBE, BEd,MA) is a Trust Director. He is retired from a working life in the voluntary, public and private sectors. He currently volunteers as the Synod Secretary of the London District of the Methodist Church. He started his working life as a scientific assistant at the Atomic Energy Authority before qualifying as a teacher. He taught at three comprehensive schools and has been an education adviser, secondary school inspector, deputy director of education and director of community development in London boroughs. He was interim general manager of the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust for nearly two years. In 1992 he was appointed as Chief Executive of the City Challenge regeneration company with responsibility for the environmental and economic development, coincidentally, of the area in which his family settled when they arrived from the Caribbean. He has always been involved in voluntary work sitting on boards of community organisations, a number of private sector organisations [such as the Corporate Sustainability Committee of a major international bank], the governing body of schools and of a large further education college of which he was Chair for fourteen years. He has been honoured with an OBE for his voluntary contribution to further education.
Dr Krutika Pau – Trust Director
Dr Krutika Pau is a Trust Director with a Doctorate in Education and a Masters in Business Administration. She is currently the interim Director of Children and Families for The Children’s Society, a national charity supporting young people experiencing multiple disadvantages. Her career in the public sector has been dedicated to improving outcomes for children, young people and families living in diverse communities. She has been the statutory Director of Children’s Services for Slough Borough Council and led the work to establish an independent Trust to manage children’s social care services in the borough. She has previously been Director of Children’s Services in the London Borough of Brent, directing the planning, commissioning and delivery of services including children’s social care, education, youth service, youth offending team, early years and adult education. Krutika has worked at the Department for Education, brokering and establishing sponsored academies in London and has held a ministerial appointment as a Schools Adjudicator. She has significant experience of service transformation and improvement and has led local authority children’s safeguarding peer reviews on behalf of the Local Government Association. Working for Deloitte, she has also undertaken safeguarding peer reviews of schools in Chile. Krutika has served as a member of the corporation of the College of North West London and chaired the audit committee (2001-2009). She has also been a Trustee of SHINE, a national education charity (2005-2015) and currently provides support to the Cambridge University Primary School.
Mayur Patel – Trust Director (CBE)
Mayur Patel (CBE) is a Trust director. He is a qualified Solicitor who currently works as CEO as one of the Hinduja Group Companies. He previously worked at The Law Society as Head of Legal Services. Prior to taking up this post in December 2016, He worked in the Government Legal Department (formerly known as Treasury Solicitor’s Department) for 26 years where he undertook a very wide variety of posts and work. He joined the Treasury Solicitor’s Department in 1990 to work in its property department. He moved to the DEFRA in 1991 (previously known as the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food) where he worked for 13 years where he was the Head of Civil and European Litigation. In 2003, he moved back to Treasury Solicitor’s Department to become Head of Prison Service Litigation, then Head of Ministry of Defence litigation and then Head of Immigration and National Security. In 2008, he moved into the world of public inquiries and worked on high profile inquiries such a Chilcott and Leveson. He was also the Head of Guantanamo Bay Litigation which was the biggest litigation law suit which the HMG has faced. In 2011 he was seconded to Parliament as the Legal Advisor to the Parliamentary Commission for banking Standards which was a Commission set up by Parliament in the wake of the banking crisis of 2008 to critically examine the role of the banks, their culture and standards. In 2012, he returned to Treasury Solicitor’s Department and took up the post of Head of Department or Health and Work and Pensions Litigation. In 2014 he became Head of Bona Vacantia. Mayur was awarded the CBE in 2011 for his services to Government. He is a keen sports fan, especially of football and cricket.
Vijay Doshi – Trust Director
Mr Vijay Doshi is an executive with extensive experience gained globally with world class PLCs and owner managed organisations. He has an understanding of business and government protocols in the UK; European and Asia/Pacific Markets across diverse industries. Mr Doshi has a particular interest in Education.
Molly Warrington – Trust Director
Dr Molly Warrington is a Trust Director and Chair of the Standards Committee. She is a Human Geographer and has undertaken research into homelessness, the geographies of domestic violence and gender and education. With Mike Younger she co-directed a four-year research project funded by the then Department for Education and Skills, working with around sixty schools across England to explore strategies addressing gender and achievement. Molly has also worked through the Centre for Commonwealth Education in the Caribbean and East Africa. In partnership with governments and NGOs in Kenya and Uganda, she directed a longitudinal study exploring why some girls from very poor backgrounds were able to remain in school ‘against the odds’. She has over forty publications in the form of peer-reviewed academic papers, books, book chapters and reports. Until recently Molly was a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Geography, University of Cambridge, where she taught at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. For a number of years she was Director of Studies in Geograpy at King’s College, where she was involved in all aspects of student admissions to the College, as well as overseeing students’ academic programmes. She was at one time an Admissions Tutor at Homerton and is currently an Emeritus Fellow of Homerton College. She served for many years as a Foundation Governor, and was later Chair of the Governing Body of a Church of England primary school.
Krish Raval OBE – Trust Director
An executive training consultant, Krish has a particular focus on leadership development, conflict resolution and change management. His training practice is client-centred, values based, psycho-analytically informed and employs a variety of intuitive and established frameworks.
He is the founder of Faith in Leadership, and Learn to Lead, prominent organisations that develop the capacity of faith leaders and young people, respectively. Born in Ethiopia of Indian parents, Krish is a Moller Visiting Leadership Scholar at the University of Cambridge, read law at Trinity Hall, Cambridge and the University of Sheffield respectively. Krish is a regular contributor to BBC Radio’s Pause for Thought series. He carried the Olympic Torch in the London Olympics of 2012, and was awarded an OBE by Her Majesty The Queen in the Birthday Honours List of 2018 for Services to Leadership Education and Inter-faith Cohesion.
Bavaani Nanthabalan – Trust Director
Bavaani is passionate about children’s learning and has had extensive experience of teaching in the entire primary range, working in schools first in Singapore and then in England, before taking on her first headship. She has had substantial experience as an Executive Headteacher leading four schools as part of a soft federation. In all schools, she has left an impact on standards of attainment and achievement and built leadership capacity.
Usha Sahni – Education Director (OBE)
Usha Sahni (OBE) is the Trust’s Director of Education. As an HMI for twelve years she has served with Ofsted in many senior roles including that of Regional Director and Deputy Director for the Early Years national policy team. As a distinguished headteacher, she has served in many inner London schools and has made a strong contribution to national initiatives in raising standards for children from poorer backgrounds. She is a trustee of two national charities engaged in promoting the well-being of children and families in vulnerable circumstances. Usha was a founding member of the National College for School Leadership, and a Board member for the University Of London Institute Of Education. Her experience includes leadership training and coaching for headteachers and teachers as a mentor, an external examiner and an assessor of the National Professional Qualification for Headship. Usha has Masters Degrees in Psychology and Education & Management. In 1999, she was awarded an OBE for her Services to Education.
Kirit Patel – Finance Director
Kirit Patel is the Finance Director of the Trust. Kirit is a chartered accountant and also a qualified teacher. He started his teaching career at Waltham Forest College where he spent four years teaching IT and Law. Thereafter, a career move took him into accounting and finance. He joined PwC where he gained extensive financial consulting and audit experience across various sectors and industries. His experience includes establishing corporate finance functions and serving as Head of Finance.
Joanne Hatfield – HR Director
Joanne Hatfield HR Director for the Trust. As a Chartered Member of the CIPD with 20+ years’ post qualification experience gained within varying medium and large Local Authorities across London and South East. Extensive experience as a HR/OD generalist and specialist on both a strategic and operational front. Joanne is able to effectively integrate workforce strategy within organisational culture to follow through on business direction changes to support the transformation of services delivered. She has excellent skills in influencing and advising at senior levels including the Leader of the Council, Chair of Trust Board, Cabinet Members, Board Members, Chief Executives, Chief Officers and senior trade union representatives. Joanne is experienced in delivering HR services in very diverse organisations and has a deep personal commitment to the principles of equality and fairness. Her last role held was as the Head of HR/OD for Slough Children’s Services Trust. Appointed to support the startup of the Trust and transition of the staff to the new organisation which was created to deliver sustainable improvement and outcomes for the most vulnerable children within the borough.
Mike Ion – Head of School Improvement (Secondary)
Mike is a former secondary headteacher and was Deputy National Director for School Improvement with the Department for Education/National Strategies between 2008 and 2011 when he had responsibility for the National Challenge programme. In April 2011, Mike went to work full time for the Tony Blair Faith Foundation where he helped to establish the Face to Faith schools programme for 12-17 year olds, which is now active in 19 countries and growing. In May 2014 Mike returned to work for the Department for Education as an Education Adviser where he supported the formation of new academy trusts, assessed free school applications and visited open academies that were underperforming.
Zoe Hussain – Head of School Improvement (Primary)
Zoe Hussain is the Head of School Improvement (Primary) for the Trust. She is an experienced Headteacher and has worked with Hertfordshire County as an improvement partner. Prior to headship, she worked then worked for the London Borough of Redbridge local authority as a Behaviour and Anti-Bullying Consultant and also set up a number of nurture groups in a variety of school settings. Nurture Groups and peer mediation became the focus of her Masters Degree with the Institute of Education. Her passion for ensuring all children have the opportunity to experience high quality education and her special interest in behaviour has also led to her involvement in working with Teaching Schools and Initial Teacher Training. She is also passionate about coaching and leadership development.