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Chris Pollitt HMI
Chris Pollitt is one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors for schools and a Specialist Lead for Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities.
Chris Pollitt is a qualified teacher and has achieved a NPQH. Before working for Ofsted, Chris gained extensive senior management experience as a headteacher, deputy headteacher, assistant headteacher and middle leader in several mainstream and special schools. His responsibilities included school improvement, self-evaluation and working with individual departments to raise the quality of teaching, learning and assessment. Chris has also been a school governor in a number of schools and a partnerships consultant for a teaching school alliance.
Dr Nicola Crossley
Dr Nic Crossley is Director of Inclusion at Astrea Academy Trust.
A research graduate from the University of Exeter, Nicola is Executive Director for Inclusion at Astrea. Her role involves working with schools to enhance the learning experience for all vulnerable learners; but particularly those who are disadvantaged and/or have special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). Her specialist interest areas are Autism and Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) and she is passionate about improving provision in these areas, in particular.
Her previous experience is varied having worked across Primary, Secondary, Mainstream and Specialist provision. She has worked as a Consultant Principal to two Special schools and as a School Inspector and has also written and led leadership development training for middle and senior leaders in Primary, Secondary and Special Education in England, Wales and Jersey. Her areas of professional expertise include: school improvement through action planning and impact analysis, evaluating the effectiveness of targeted interventions, and leadership development through coaching and mentoring.
With a Masters in Educational Leadership and Management, a Masters in Practice-Based Educational Research and a Doctorate in Education, Nicola has supported schools to develop their own research-based practice. Her research interests include: the impact of government reform on conceptualisations of professionalism through the lens of critical discourse analysis and factors which contribute to academic underachievement in children of compulsory school age in England.
Nicola is co-author of [Inclusion: A Principled Guide for School Leaders] and is an Honorary Teaching Fellow at the University of Warwick
Ryan Purdy is Director of SEND at Astrea Academy Dearne, with a number of years' experience as a Secondary SENDCo, Literacy Co-ordinator and Teacher of English. Ryan is also the lead for the Dearne Area Pyramid group of schools, a SEND Link Governor and a member of the Local Area SEND Improvement Group for Barnsley. He has achieved a Post Graduate Certificate in Special Educational Needs Co-ordination and also a Masters in Education through Sheffield Hallam University.
Rachel Cosgrove studied Zoology before training to teach and has over 25 years of experience across primary, special and secondary schools. As a highly effective secondary SENCo and Assistant Head Teacher, she created innovative provision for vulnerable groups including a successful foundation science pathway.
Rachel is a trained and experienced SEND reviewer and is a nasen associate. As an education consultant she works with primary and secondary schools to develop inclusive practise. Rachel works with Oxfordshire Virtual School for Children We Care For and champions attachment and trauma informed practice. As a well-respected conference speaker and workshop facilitator, she enjoys sharing her enthusiasm and knowledge with teachers, student teachers and support staff.
Rachel is author of the book ‘Inclusive Teaching in a Nutshell’, which was published in July 2021 and is a jam-packed guide to all things inclusive for mainstream teachers in any setting.