Meet our NPQ Team

Judith Schafer                                              Judith Schafer Director of One Cumbria TSH

Director of One Cumbria TSH
Facilitator for NPQEL

After graduating from Hertford College, Oxford University with a degree in English Language and Literature, I began my career as a journalist in London, freelancing for the broadsheets for eight years, until the siren call of teaching (both my parents were Headteachers) became irresistible and I completed my PGCE at Goldsmith’s College, London University. Since then, I have taught in London, Kent, Uganda and Scotland before arriving back in Cumbria, where I most recently was Executive Headteacher of Solway and Beacon Hill Community Schools, combined as Cumbria Futures Federation. Executive Leadership is considerably more than the sum of its parts and an exhilarating and all-consuming challenge to bring disparate settings and staff together. It’s a privilege and responsibility to work with colleagues in Cumbrian schools taking on that challenge, from the perspective of my new role as Deputy CEO of CLLT and Director of the TSH.

Dr Alison Wilkinson NPQ Lead for One Cumbria Teaching School Hub

Jacqui Wilson                                             

Appropriate Body Lead at One Cumbria TSH
Facilitator for NPQEL

I have worked in education since 1991 and was a Headteacher for 19 years before my retirement in December 2023. I was lucky enough to lead three Primary schools as the substantive head and held executive headship over another small West Cumbrian Primary school. I undertook NPQH way back and more recently successfully completed the NPQEL programme.

I now work as the Appropriate Body Lead for One Cumbria and am lucky enough to visit schools and work with ECTs across the county. When I’m not working my time is taken up by my little Granddaughter, Ophelia.


Dr Alison Wilkinson NPQ Lead for One Cumbria Teaching School Hub

Lindsay Burnett                                             

Facilitator for NPQEL

I am currently a headteacher at a three form entry school in Carlisle. Previous leadership roles have included small school headship, interim executive headship and leading a school within a federation. I have worked both within Cumbria and in London and the South West and have mainly served schools with high levels of deprivation and additional needs. Alongside my leadership in school I have also worked as a Maths Specialist in the local maths hub and the STA.

Deborah Boekestein Official Bio Pic

Tina Beddoe                                 

Deputy Director of One Cumbria TSH

Facilitator for NPQEYL

Tina is the former headteacher of a West Cumbrian Infant School where she spent eighteen happy years and is currently a governor at another infant school. A firm believer in the power of play, as well as tackling disadvantage, and developing oracy skills, she fully understands the challenges involved in leading an Early Years setting.

Carly Cardwell Official Bio Pic

Emma McCormick

Facilitator for NPQEYL

For over 26 years, Emma has worked with children and families across all sectors. Seeking innovative ways of delivery, she takes a “we can” approach to all aspects of her work. Emma is an advocate of children’s rights and believes that personal, social and emotional development is critical to children leading happy and healthy lives.

Rob Dawson Official Bio Pic

Ann Breeze                                               

Facilitator for NPQEYL

My wide experience and work within early years for over 30 years has included senior and leadership roles within local authorities, schools, children’s centres with 0-5 provision, substantive teaching in the EYFS and work across the PVI sector as an Early Years consultant/adviser/senior adviser and team manager. Included in this is delivery to a range of professionals, multi-agency partners and practitioners/head teachers/senior leaders across the sectors working with individuals, small and large groups

I have been fortunate to access many DfE initiative programmes including the development of early years foundation stage units that had national recognition, using phonics/literacy in the early years, the Early Years Professional programme, Early Years SEND partnership, Early Years SENCO award Level 3 to name a few. I am trained as an Early Years Peer Challenge reviewer with the LGA and I have the NPQICL qualification

My knowledge and skills continue to develop through professional partnerships, personal research, and access to training. This informs work I plan, write and deliver to practitioners but also informs strategic implementation both area and district wide

I have organised and facilitated large scale conferences working with national, local and team presenters and additionally organise and facilitate different networks across the sector

Within my current role an expectation is that work is informed and influenced by evidence-based programmes. Within the Early Years Strategy, I lead and report on the workstream for disadvantaged and vulnerable children including reflection on work by the Education Endowment Foundation to Raise the Educational Attainment of children, improve outcomes and the quality of education in the EYFS

Across all my work and line management responsibilities I positively support, coach and engage learners in their development through negotiation, solution focused thinking, managing change and challenge, offering constructive feedback for areas to develop as well as feeding back on strengths. A key aspect of my role is establishing and building relationships with others, facilitating peer to peer support to build on the expertise, strengths and experiences of practitioners across the EYFS

Stephen Gilby Official Bio Pic

Imogen Bibby                                         

Facilitator for NPQEYL

Imogen studied a PGCE and Masters in Education, focusing upon Early Years, at Durham University. Imogen has taught Early Years in the North East and Cumbria for the past 11 years. Imogen has carried out Early Years and Phonics training for the National Day Nursery Association and for trainee teachers. She is currently Early Years and arly reading lead and is a NPQEYL facilitator for One Cumbria. 

Steve Henneberry Official Bio Pic

Amanda McDonald                             

Facilitator for NPQEYL

I have been involved in Early Years Education for my whole career since qualifying as a teacher in 1994.  Having worked as  an Early Years teacher for several years I then worked as an adviser for the local authority in the Early Years team supporting maintained schools and private and voluntary settings meet the requirements of the EYFS and Ofsted and also supporting Children’s Centre’s.  After 5 years away from direct work with children and families I returned to school as a Headteacher, a role I enjoyed until last year when I returned to work for the Local Authority as the Early Years & Childcare Team manager.  I am passionate about the importance of Early Years Education and the impact high quality provision has on a child’s future learning and achievements.  The early years are the building blocks to a child’s future success and so it is so important we get this right.  I am currently very happy to be working with ONE Cumbria on the ECT and the NPQEYL programmes, providing specialist Early Years input and support.

Robert Jackson NPQ Facilitator for One Cumbria

Stephen Gilby

Facilitator for NPQH

A secondary trained teacher, I have worked in FE, HE and Secondary Education. I’m very proud to be Headteacher at Ullswater Community College in Penrith having previously been Principal of an Academy in a large national MAT and prior to that Vice Principal and Acting Principal in a stand alone Academy.

It is a privilege to be involved in the delivery of the NPQH programme and I really believe in the NPQ programmes – our school has 10 staff undertaking them at every level up to NPQEL.

Gary Newman Official Bio Pic uncompressed

Gary Newman

Facilitator for NPQH

During over thirty years in primary education, I enjoyed a variety of roles across a range of different schools, culminating in seventeen years as a Cumbrian headteacher.  My wider work took me into system leadership, developing a Teaching School and being the trustee of a global education charity.  It’s a great feeling to be able to share some of that experience with aspiring and new headteachers through One Cumbria’s unique perspective on the NPQ programmes.

James Nichols Official Bio Pic

James Nichols

Facilitator for NPQLBC

I am the assistant headteacher at The Gillford Centre Pupil Referral Unit in Carlisle for KS1-KS4 pupils.  Prior to this I worked in a primary school in Carlisle.  I am delighted to facilitate the NPQLBC and look forward to working with colleagues from across the county.

Peter Ovens Official Bio Pic

Kara Smallman

Facilitator for NPQLBC

I’m a passionate teacher and behaviour management specialist on a mission to understand the bigger picture. 18 years of experience in both the classroom and leadership roles, from EYFS to Year 9 within mainstream and SEND. Currently studying towards gaining my MA in Education Professional Practice.

Judith Schafer Director of One Cumbria TSH

Finn Schafer

Facilitator for NPQLBC

I am the Specialist LSA (Social, Emotional and Mental Health) as part of the Pastoral team at WLA which I’ve been doing for nearly a year. I finished my NPQLBC in October 2023 and this is my first time facilitating.

David Sibbit NPQ Facilitator Official Bio Pic

Rachel Laverack

Facilitator for NPQLL

Rachel has over thirty years’ experience in both teaching and advisory roles. She is passionate about all aspects of English. She currently works as a General Advisor for Cumbria Local Authority. Prior to this, she worked as an English Consultant with The National Strategies and as Head of English and Drama in two secondary schools in Cumbria.

David Sibbit NPQ Facilitator Official Bio Pic

Helen Hawley

Facilitator for NPQLL

Helen is an assistant headteacher and Literacy lead at Orgill Primary School.  She has a wealth of teaching experience and has taught the full primary range.  She is also Hub Lead of Orgill English Hub, which she manages on a day to day basis, liaising with schools, hosting a range of events and supporting Literacy Specialists.  She balances this with her role of maintaining high standards in her own school.

David Sibbit NPQ Facilitator Official Bio Pic

Molly Schofield                                       

Facilitator for NPQLL

Molly is Key Stage 1 leader, Year 2 teacher and Reading Leader at Orgill Primary School in Egremont. She is passionate about ensuring that all children leave school with not only the ability to read, but with a deep love of reading. Molly is also Assistant Hub Lead at Orgill English Hub and works as a Literacy Specialist, supporting schools in the local area to audit and develop their early reading provision.

David Sibbit NPQ Facilitator Official Bio Pic

Jenny Wildman                                     

Facilitator for NPQLL

Originally a journalist from Liverpool, Jenny has taught English in four secondary schools across Yorkshire and Cumbria. In a teaching career spanning 20 years, she has been a pastoral leader at Post 16, a leader of General Studies and PSHE whole school and an A Level English Language lead. Now an Assistant Headteacher at Furness Academy, Barrow-in-Furness, Jenny leads Literacy across the academy and continues to deliver GCSE English lessons alongside this. Jenny is a graduate of the NPQLL, having been a member of the first cohort to undertake the qualification.

David Sibbit NPQ Facilitator Official Bio Pic

Jon Stewart

Facilitator for NPQLTD and NPQLBC

I’m an experienced teacher who has worked in all stages of Primary and Secondary education in my 18 years as a teaching professional. I’m currently a Deputy Headteacher and Year 4 at a school in Carlisle. Alongside my roles in school, I am also part of the ECF/NPQ Teaching Schools Hubs Council National Advisory Board and a qualified NPQ Assessor.  My role with One Cumbria is leading CPD seminars and conferences to support schools and education professionals develop and implement high quality teaching and learning and leading a team of 50+ ECF/NPQ Facilitators.

Kara Smallman Official Bio Pic

Deborah Boekestein                             

Facilitator for NPQLTD

I feel privileged to be working with young learners at Inglewood Nursery and Infant School. As they say in all the courses, it’s all about context…I’m still learning something every day! That’s why I think these NPQs are just brilliant. They keep us all reflecting on theory and practice and allow us to make a real difference by combining them!

Kara Smallman Official Bio Pic

Richard Wilson                                     

Facilitator for NPQLTD

I have been a teacher for 23 years and a Head Teacher for the last 7.

During my career I have taught across the Primary age phases and currently teach .3 in Early Years.

I have also been Director of our former Teaching School and the Programme Leader for our former Schools Direct (ITT) programme.

Currently, I represent Westmorland and Furness on the Primary Head teachers Association Executive.

Alongside my desire to see all children reach their potential, I have a real dedication to workforce CPD at all levels. As such, I am excited to be facilitating NPQs for One Cumbria and to work with colleagues from across the region.

Jon Stewart Lead NPQ & ECF Facilitator for One Cumbria TSH

Richard Worsley

Facilitator for NPQLT

I have been a teacher since 2005. As a Head of Department or an Assistant Head I have had career-long love of teaching and learning. This is because it has that been an area of the profession has continually evolved and changed. I look forward to sharing my enthusiasm for teaching as an NPQ facilitator.

Angela Airey                                                   

Facilitator for NPQLT

In 2007, I qualified as a teacher and continue to develop my own practise to support and have a positive impact on children and their families.  As Assistant Head teacher, I am committed to playing a key role in the strategic leadership and management of the whole school and responding positively to the changing and challenging educational environment. As an NPQ facilitator, I look forward to sharing my passion for teaching and learning.


Rob Dawson

Facilitator for NPQSL

I have been teaching in Penrith for almost 20 years, spending the last 7 years as Assistant Headteacher at Queen Elizabeth Grammar School. I trained as a PE teacher in Leeds, qualifying in 2002. During my career I have been a Head of Sixth Form, and more recently have led whole-school teaching and learning. My areas of interest are centred around IT development, and behaviour for learning, and extra-curricular provision. I still teach PE (and coach), but also teach my second subject, Technology.

Tina Beddow ECF Lead for One Cumbria Teaching School Hub

David Sibbit

Facilitator for NPQSL

I was a secondary Headteacher in West Cumbria for 15 years, and now work as the West Consortium Officer and Inclusion Panel Chair. I have facilitated programmes for over 10 years for middle and senior leaders, Heads and Executive Heads, inspired by my own positive experiences of self-directed learning.

Ruth Stead

Facilitator for NPQSL

I have been a teacher of art, design and technology for 16 years, a head of department for 14 years and a member of the senior leadership team since 2017.  I have the privilege of working at Netherhall School in Maryport as an assistant headteacher, with responsibility for teaching and learning and CPD. I am passionate about providing the best education for our students and enjoy any opportunity to work alongside others as part of a professional learning community

Sue Blair

Facilitator for NPQSL

My name is Sue Blair.  Head Teacher for 23 years – the last 17 years at Pennine Way Primary School.  During this time, we have had 2 floods, built a new School,  grown from 215 pupils to 550 and just about survived COVID19!  I have been Chair of the Cumbrian PHA for the last 3 years.  Professional interests include Behaviour Management, Wellbeing, Leadership and Community Development.  Personal interests include cycling and chocolate.

Pete Hicks                                                   

Facilitator for NPQSL

Peter’s leadership career spans 30 years across Cumbria. In his role as a NPQSL facilitator he draws upon many years of experience as Headteacher of a large Primary and Nursery School, a National Leader of Education and an executive Head, as well as his time in a county-wide role as a member of the Local Authority’s School Improvement Team.

Much of his professional focus is now given to developing senior leadership in schools as a consultant and supporting Headteachers new to the role or school. This has added Special and Secondary School settings to Peter’s experience, bringing further insight to his understanding of the challenges, and rewards, of school leadership. As a founding member of the LIS Leadership Training Course, for aspiring leaders, Peter is currently preparing for their 5th Cohort.

Nan Oldfield

Facilitator for NPQSL

I have been in teaching for 34 years, working in two local authorities, Halifax and Bradford. I retired as Executive Headteacher of the Copley and New Road Federation in Jan 2022. On my leadership journey to Executive Headteacher I held many senior leader roles from literacy, numeracy and science lead to SENDCO and also had 4 years as a Deputy Headteacher.

In 2007, I got my first headship at Copley Primary School, Halifax. A large primary school with 321 pupils and 70 staff. I completed my NPQH through the NCSL.

In 2013 after a successful Ofsted where the school was judged Outstanding in all areas, I took on an additional headship at New Road School in Halifax and created the Copley and New Road Federation. I worked with an incredibly dedicated and talented group of school leaders from Copley, who took New Road from an inadequate Ofsted judgement to Good with Outstanding features.

I became a National Leader of Education (NLE) in 2014, supporting an additional 12 schools in their improvement journeys.

In 2021, I moved into a pure Executive Headship role in preparation for retirement from the Federation in 2022. Two colleagues who began as ECT teachers with me at Copley progressed through the leadership structure and took on both headships upon my retirement.

Copley and New Road were involved in the mastery maths programme from it’s inception in 2015. I visited both Shanghai and Singapore for the DFE and became a strategic partner for the West Yorkshire and White Rose Maths hub in 2016. I have an incredible passion for inclusion and opened the first fully integrated mainstream hub in Calderdale at Copley School for 10 pupils with complex needs.

I still work as a school improvement partner for Calderdale MBC, specialising in many aspects of school improvement work, including EYFS reviews, but live now in South Lakeland.

Rebecca Davies                                     

Facilitator for NPQLPM

I am currently the Headteacher of St Catherine’s Catholic Primary School in Penrith and have been teaching for twenty years. I have taught the full primary range including Nursery up to Year 6. I have a strong passion for Maths education and, alongside my role in school, I am also deputy Maths Hub Lead for the North North West Maths Hub. Working alongside schools across Cumbria and North Lancashire.

Craig Hodgson                                             

Facilitator for NPQLPM

My name is Craig Hodgson,  I am based at Victoria Junior School in Workington;  I have been a Teacher for 27 years and joined the NNWMaths Hub in 2016 as a Teaching for Mastery Specialist working with schools in the Readiness, Development and Sustaining phases.   I am an Accredited Professional Development Lead and last year completed the School Development Lead training with the NCETM.   This year, alongside my other roles, I’m working as an Intensive Support Partner for the Maths Hub delivering bespoke Targeted Support in Mathematics.  I’m also an SLE for Maths.

Jonathan Livesey                                       

Facilitator for NPQLPM

After a career in Primary education, I trained as a Mastery specialist with NNW Maths Hub. Over the last six years I have been involved in leading a number of PD programmes for the hub and was appointed as Deputy Maths Hub lead last year. I have always valued professional development and have completed the NPQH, am an accredited Professional Development lead and completed the School Development lead programme with the NCETM.