Our Regional Directors have a wealth of in-depth experience leading improvement across our schools, working closely with headteachers to support each school on its journey of continuous improvement. Regional Directors ensure that all schools benefit from collaboration, particularly through local clustering.
Primary Regional Director (North)
Tanya joined United Learning in January 2018. In her previous role as HMI she led inspections of primary schools, independent schools, nurseries and special schools. Her role as HMI also involved complaints investigations, monitoring schools in categories of concern and she took part in national surveys. Her background in early years means that she has had the privilege of inspecting nursery schools.
Tanya started teaching in 1988 and has had a successful career in education as a primary teacher, deputy headteacher and headteacher. This experience includes working in schools in challenging contexts and in both urban and rural settings. She sat on the executive boards for the Primary Heads Association and the NAHT in Cumbria, working on issues that affected the future direction of education.
Primary Regional Director (Midlands)
Matthew joined United Learning in November 2016. In his previous roles Matthew has served as a Primary Headtecher for nearly ten years. Over this period of time he led schools that were in an Ofsted Category, ensuring a rapid and focused improvement in all areas.
Prior to his appointment as a Headteacher, Matthew worked as a Deputy Head, leading Assessment, Behaviour and Curriculum.
Matthew started teaching in 1993. All of his teaching and leadership experience have been within areas of social and economic challenge, ensuring his focus has always been upon improving life chances and educational progress for all groups of pupils.
Primary Regional Director (South)
Claire has enjoyed an extensive and varied career working in schools, starting in 1988, and leading on to subsequent success in primary teaching, subject and senior leadership. As part of this, she has had over 20 years’ experience of Headship which included taking a school to “Outstanding” and leading a school out of “Special Measures.”
Claire is a Local Leader of Education, has been an Inspector for Ofsted for a number of years, and has worked as a school improvement partner providing wide ranging support for schools in challenging contexts. She is joining United Learning following 3 years in the role of Director of Education for a large multi – academy trust in Cornwall.
Claire says “Working in schools as I do is an absolute privilege, and I am now very excited to meet and work with United Learning leaders and practitioners and to do all that I can to support further success”.
Primary Regional Director (London)
Karen joined United Learning in September 2022. She started teaching in 2004 and has had a successful career in education as a primary teacher, deputy headteacher and headteacher.
This experience includes working in maintained school, MATs and schools in challenging contexts and areas of high depravation. Karen is a lead Ofsted Inspector which experience of inspecting schools in all remits.
She has also worked as a Lead adviser for an inner London local authority supporting primary headteachers.
Senior Regional Director
Oli is Regional Director for Cumbria and Lancashire. She has previously been the Regional Director for the East Midlands where she has worked with three schools on their improvement journey towards outstanding. Prior to this, Oli led the first national SCITT for United Learning and was Principal and Executive Principal of Paddington Academy for 10 years.
Secondary Regional Director
Katie is a part-time Regional Director and joint Principal of Paddington Academy. Katie works with schools in South-East London and her strategic priority is United Teaching.
Stuart is a full-time Regional Director and works with schools in Salford, Bournemouth and Poole and the South. Stuart’s strategic responsibilities are Data and Assessment and Behaviour and Suspensions. Stuart has worked in the group since 2015 where he started at Glenmoor and Winton Academies in Bournemouth. His interests include coaching at his local cricket club and being an active parent for his three children.
Chris Raeside is a secondary Regional Director for academies in the south. She joined United Learning in September 2017 following 7 years working for Ofsted as one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors. For her last three years with Ofsted, Chris was a senior HMI, working in the South West, overseeing and quality-assuring inspection throughout the region. She is an experienced secondary senior leader, working in schools and local authorities in two London authorities and, since 2005, in Hampshire, where she lives.
Steve Adcock works as a Regional Director with United Learning schools in Cambridge and London. Before taking up this post, Steve established United Learning’s team of subject and specialist advisers, and led this team’s curriculum work which accelerated during the pandemic. In 2018, Steve was part of the team that led the introduction of the Rosenshine Principles to United Learning schools. Steve joined United Learning in 2015 following senior leadership positions in two London schools. He has a Masters in Education Management and recently completed the National Professional Qualification for Executive Leadership. Steve enjoys reading and running, and playing football with his son while he still has the upper hand. He lives in east London with his wife and son.
Laura is a full-time Regional Director and works with schools in Yorkshire and Manchester. Laura’s strategic responsibility is Disadvantaged and Pupil Premium. Laura currently works as a Regional Director in the North. Before taking up this post, Laura worked as a Principal of a secondary school in Leeds. Her wider interests include visiting galleries, arts and crafts, walking and keeping her 5-year-old daughter entertained.
Chris recently joined the Regional Director team for Secondaries and is working with schools in the East Midlands. Chris remains Principal of Northampton Academy where he has been for the last six years. In that time the school has moved to now be recognised as a national leader in character education and achieved a strong Ofsted outcome in March 2023.
Outside of school he is kept very busy with two little kids, but when he gets a chance, he is an avid sports fan. His two passions are Scotland Rugby team and Dundee United Football Club. They both test his character on a regular basis.
Leon is a part-time Regional Director and part-time Executive Head at The Elms and The Hurlingham Academies. Leon works with schools across London and his strategic priority is Year 11 Standards.
Dino Di Salvo
Dino works primarily with schools in the Midlands and Swindon. He also holds the position of Principal at Kettering Buccleuch Academy, an all-through school which has improved rapidly under his leadership and has won a Pearson Silver Award this year for Secondary School Of The Year: Making A Difference. Alongside his other roles Dino has guided many of United Learning’s aspiring leaders through the completion of the group’s NPQH programme.
Director of Secondary Academies and Regional DIrector for Paddington Academy
Ben Antell currently works as Director of Secondary Academies in United Learning. Before taking up this post, Ben worked for four years as a Secondary Regional Director supporting schools across the country. Ben has previously held Executive Principal and Principal posts in a number of schools before his appointment as Regional Director. Ben holds an honours degree from the University of Exeter. His wider interests include keeping fit, playing a variety of sports and providing a taxi service to his two teenage sons.
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