Meet The Team

Lindsey Vollans – Strategic Lead

Lindsey is the Strategic Lead for the English Hub and the CEO of One Excellence Multi Academy Trust. Lindsey is passionate about literacy as believes it is the cornerstone of the entire curriculum. Lindsey has created an exceptional team of practitioners across a federation, who all share in this belief. She has striven to support those who work with her by providing the highest quality professional development and the opportunity to flourish. This is why the English Hub project is so intrinsic to her mindset: everyone can learn, we can all improve. Life is learning.

Lindsey is determined to ensure that St. Michael’s English Hub inspires and supports schools across the North East to have the highest standards in early reading so that every child in our region will become a confident and fluent reader.

Beth Dawson – English Hub Lead and Literacy Specialist

Beth Dawson is Head of School at St. Michael’s C of E Primary School where she supported the school in gaining their outstanding judgement in 2017. During her time at St. Michael’s, she has worked across all key stages and supported the development and implementation of the curriculum. As curriculum lead, she ensured that rigorous and robust monitoring systems were in place to raise standards in teaching and learning.

Beth has also set up the primary section of Durham SCITT and was SCITT lead for four years. In this role, she supported the development of ITT, observed trainee teachers, built effective relationships with schools and mentors and delivered training.

Beth is also an ELE for Carmel Research School.

She is an experienced senior leader with a proven track record of supporting schools. She has areas of expertise in leadership development, staff development, improving teaching and learning, effective professional development, and embedding a strong reading culture.

Stacey Rand – English Hub Lead and Literacy Specialist

Stacey Rand is Head of School at Evenwood C of E Primary School where she has worked for five years starting as Deputy Head Teacher as well as being one of our Literacy Specialists.  During her time at Evenwood, she has taught across KS1 and KS2.  Before Evenwood, she taught in years 1 and 2 for seven years, delivering and leading daily phonics lessons, completing year 1 phonics screening checks, and ensuring parents receive the correct and appropriate information around phonics and early reading.

She has a passion for early reading and phonics and believes this is the backbone of learning.  During her time at Evenwood, she has implemented a new phonics programme and developed both home reading and reading for pleasure throughout the school.

She has a passion for training teachers. One of her roles involves coaching and supporting teachers in all stages of their careers to ensure the children receive the best education possible.

She is excited to be starting her second year as a Literacy Specialist for St. Michael’s English Hub.  She believes this opportunity is a privilege and is grateful for the opportunity to support other teachers and schools to develop their phonics teaching and a love of reading. She says, “There is nothing better than seeing the impact my support has had not only on schools but more importantly the lifelong impact it has on children.”

Debbie Hamilton – CPD Lead and Literacy Specialist

Debbie Hamilton is one of our CPD Leads as well as a Literacy Specialist.

In school, she is the Assistant Head Teacher and Reading Leader. Since starting her teaching career at Evenwood C of E Primary School she has taught across Early Years and Key Stage 1. As a class teacher, she has taught two phonic programmes, starting with Letters and Sounds and then moving on to Sounds-Write. Within her role of Reading Leader, she has supported all phonic teachers with their training and teaching during practise and coaching sessions when the new systematic synthetic phonic programme was implemented across the whole school.

Her passion for early reading blossomed when becoming a mum and further flourished in the classroom. Sitting down and reading a high-quality picture book is time she cherishes in school. Her devotion to sharing this passion with others has been enabled through the roles she fulfills at St. Michael’s English Hub.

James Paley – Literacy Specialist

James is a Literacy Specialist and Assistant Headteacher at St. Michael’s C of E Primary School. James is Curriculum Lead for One Excellence Multi Academy Trust. In his role, he helps develop curriculum, raise standards in teaching and learning and support all stakeholders in schools. He is an experienced teacher and works closely with staff from all key stages providing support and development for teaching and learning as well as leadership. His knowledge and understanding of the curriculum and how to ensure children obtain their potential within its framework is outstanding.

James has a particular specialism in English and with his extensive oversight of the curriculum has supported schools in developing their wider opportunities for reading high quality and pertinent books which are highly acclaimed and relevant for specific age groups.

Laurie Kidd – Literacy Specialist

Laurie Kidd is EYFS Trust leader for One Excellence Multi Academy Trust, a highly experienced nursery teacher, and Literacy Specialist

Laurie is an enthusiastic and nurturing Early Years Leader across One Excellence Multi Academy Trust, Her role has included creating and developing an ambitious and creative curriculum, based on high-quality stories. This has provided the youngest children with enriched experiences and positive outcomes for all learners.

She is an experienced early year’s teacher with a passion for teaching the youngest children to read and grow a lifelong love for literature. She believes that the more high-quality stories and adult interactions we expose children to, the greater their understanding of language becomes. This supports their early communication and interaction skills, allowing them to talk with confidence about their ideas and gives them a voice to share all the marvellous things going on in their growing imaginations.

She has successfully implemented a high-quality synthetic phonics programme within her own classroom and across the trust, which has had a huge impact on phonics results and significantly improved GLD. She has ensured that the phonics programme used is systematic, synthetic, and demonstrates fidelity across the schools, which is used to improve outcomes for the children.

High-quality teaching, through coaching, and a solid understanding of how the youngest children learn to read, results in all children, regardless of barriers such as deprivation, learning to read independently.

Being part of St Michael’s English hub has enabled her to access a wealth of CPD in relation to reading opportunities, which has further developed her passion to support colleagues with early reading. She is an approachable, team player and believes that primary school practitioners often have all the skills and tools they need to be exceptional teachers of reading. In the ever-changing world we educate in, we often just require a fresh set of eyes, support from those around us, resources, and time, thus, building confidence within a quality phonics programme. She is very excited about her role as a Literacy Specialist and is looking forward to working with like-minded educators across the North East.

Vicki Page – Literacy Specialist

Vicki Page is a dedicated and passionate Deputy Head and Primary teacher at Cotsford Primary School. She is adept at problem-solving and believes there is always a way of reaching every child. Her enthusiasm is contagious and she has a strong belief that if you love teaching, the children will love learning.

She has a passion for developing a love of reading coupled with extensive knowledge in delivering the Read Write Inc programme and developing early reading skills. She has a comprehensive range of experience in leading phonics and mentoring new teachers with particular strength in identifying gaps in learning and how children are well supported to make speedy progress.

Helen Edney – Literacy Specialist

Helen Edney is the EYFS Lead and SENCO for St. Michael’s C of E Primary School. She is also EYFS Champion for the region.

Abby Moore – Literacy Specialist

Abby Moore is the teacher for St. Michael’s C of E Primary School where she has worked across all Key Stages.

Debbie Howe – Literacy Specialist

Debbie Howe is the Reading Lead for Middlestone Moor Primary School.