Who we are


Jonathan Johnson

CEO West Lakes Multi-Academy Trust

Welcome to Cumbria, welcome to One Cumbria, the beating heart of our professional learning community. Whatever your role in schools, One Cumbria’s positively obsessed with developing academically brilliant adults so Cumbria’s children learn the powerful knowledge, skills, attitudes and values they need to thrive and shape their world.

If you read our vision and, like me, it motivates you, then we share the same belief that every child deserves an excellent education delivered by brilliant adults whose development is the most important form of school improvement. Every day I recognise in myself the overwhelming desire to continue developing, supporting and representing everyone in our schools while helping them and Cumbria’s education system to new heights.

My role in One Cumbria is to be trusted to work across the sector on behalf of you all on strategic strands of work that weave collaboration rather than independence. I cherish my role because it gives me insight in the enormous breadth of our system and the exceptional people that work in it, while impressing upon me the profound privilege I have to do them justice by upholding all that should be respected in our noble profession.

One Cumbria is all about you and I am utterly committed to our ambitious vision to provide you with an unparalleled preparation for your next stage working in Cumbia’s schools.

Judith Schafer

Director of One Cumbria Teaching School Hub

I am delighted and excited to be appointed Director of One Cumbria Teaching School Hub. When I took on Headship I wrote a philosophy for education that, although it has changed over my tenure, retains the guiding principles that underpin everything I have done. I believe education should be ambitious, multifaceted, creative, marketable, effective, focused, and excited. Education should set the bar high for all. It should be purposeful, progressive, and independent.

This philosophy also applies to the adults in our schools. The teaching profession has long been full of inspired, flexible, unselfish professionals who recognise that the best teaching and learning is an iterative, lifelong process, with research, reflection and pedagogy at its centre. As TSH Director, I seek to build a sustainable system that provides learning which allows all staff the possibility to grow, listen to new ideas, refining and developing practice along a continuum from ITT to NPQEL.

Cumbria’s children need the best schools in their own communities. They need aspiring professionals to help them shape their world.

I grew up in Cumbria and Bristol (I am an alumnae of Jericho Primary School, Whitehaven) and studied English Language and Literature at Hertford College, Oxford University. After eight years working as a freelance journalist in London the lure of teaching took me to Goldsmith’s College, University of London, to complete a PGCE. I spent time teaching in Kent, London, Uganda and Scotland before arriving back in Cumbria in 2011. I became first Deputy then Headteacher of Solway Community School in 2013, subsequently adding Beacon Hill Community School to become Executive Head of Cumbria Futures Federation three years later.

I have spent my Headship arguing for, brokering and championing system leadership; now, I feel I have the momentum to take a real role in shaping the future of the profession in the wider educational landscape. I have been privileged to enjoy a unique position in Cumbria as Chair of CASH and co-chair of CASL which brings together all schools across the county. I have attended Primary Heads Association Executive meetings and been a member of Children’s Trust Board which has given me insight into the wider multi agency world. I have represented schools on the Cumbria LEP with links to FE, HE and employers and understand the wider picture around skills shortages. The education sector is the fifth largest employment sector in the Cumbrian economy, adding £597m to the Cumbrian economy and employing over 19,000 people; the ageing workforce and the need to attract talented professionals to fill posts over the next few years are a real issue One Cumbria can help address. The relationships and partnerships I have across and between sectors as a result of these roles have been a privilege to enjoy and I look forward to moving these forward as One Cumbria.

chair person - Vincent Ashworth

Vincent Ashworth

Chair of One Cumbria Board

Vincent is a qualified teacher. He spent 14 years in tertiary education as a teacher and a leader. He designed and taught on a range of vocational educational programmes, preparing young people for the world of work.

Vincent has a BA (Hons) degree in French Studies from the University of Lancaster as well as qualifications in interpreting from the Chartered Institute of Linguists. He has an MBA in Educational Management from London South Bank University as well as a CIPD postgraduate diploma in Human Resource Management.

Vincent joined Ofsted as one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors (HMI) in 2003. He was subsequently promoted to managing inspector, senior HMI and subsequently Assistant Regional Director for the North West in 2015. Vincent’s specialist expertise is in initial teacher education. He spent several years as one of Ofsted’s national advisers on initial teacher training. He has extensive experience in leading and quality assuring inspections in higher education partnerships, schools, further education colleges and local authority children’s services. As Assistant Regional Director, Vincent was responsible for the recruitment and selection of HMI, training of the inspector workforce, managing media communications, complaints and correspondence management, dealing with safeguarding referrals and monitoring the performance of education provision across local authority areas in the North West. Vincent’s specialist areas of expertise include:

  • School improvement
  • Curriculum reviews
  • Leadership development
  • Self-evaluation and school development planning
  • Initial teacher education.

Vincent currently works as an education consultant and is a contracted Ofsted Inspector. He is also a Trustee for West Lakes Multi Academy trust with specific responsibility as Chair of One Cumbria Teaching School Hub.

Professor Samantha Twistleton

Professor Samantha Twiselton OBE

Member of One Cumbria Board

Professor Samantha Twiselton is the Director of Sheffield Institute of Education at Sheffield Hallam University, Vice President (External) of the Chartered College of Teaching and Deputy Chair of Opportunity Area Partnership Board. She uses her research and practice in the progression of teacher expertise, and curriculum design to improve school embedded approaches to teacher development. Sam has been involved in influencing Government policy on teacher education and is the Chair of the DfE ITT Framework Group, a member of the DfE Teacher Recruitment and Retention Advisory Group, the specialist NPQs Group, the Carter Review of ITT and Expert Behaviour Management Panel, and the OFSTED Curriculum Review Panel. She is a recent recipient of an OBE for services to Higher Education.

Angela Holdsworth

Angela Holdsworth MBE

Member of One Cumbria Board

Angela Holdsworth is presently the CEO of The Sea View Trust, an all-age inclusive Trust, comprising 3 mainstream Primary Academies, 2 Special Academies and a Specialist College (16-25).

Angela has held a variety of Senior Leadership roles in both mainstream and specialist settings. Her focus is to champion the disadvantaged, whilst remaining passionate about supporting all learners and staff to inspire, learn, enjoy and achieve. Angela’s teaching career has spanned 4 Local Authorities (Lincolnshire, Manchester, Lancashire and Blackpool).  However, she continues to enjoy working with other authorities (regionally and nationally) whilst undertaking roles which are additional to her CEO responsibilities.

Having qualified in 2016 as a lecturer with University of Cumbria, Angela has worked collaboratively with them (and other partners) to successfully develop the ELIP (Educational Excellence) Primary and Special Schools Direct programme. Additionally, she remains a Strategic Partner with a number of local SCITTs.

Angela is an experienced and a high-profile leader of SEND, having been commissioned to work with a wide variety of Multi Academy Trusts and Local Authorities, providing independent advice and guidance for inclusive system improvement. As an experienced system leader, operating as an NLE, Angela is a former member of the Teaching School Council (TSC) and has undertaken School Improvement commissions across BBL and the North (Cumbria, North Yorkshire, Bradford and Rotherham). She is a passionate advocate for the self-improving school-led system, inclusion and cross-phase collaboration, and has been working with North West partners for many years to develop this.

Aside from her Trust CEO work, Angela is involved in a number of additional, SEND based, initiatives. The most recent of these include leading on the following successful projects; the Specialist Deployment Project for nasen Whole School SEND (WSS), The Sea View Trust being awarded Teaching School Hub status, the award of Behaviour Hub status to Tor View School (a Special School in The Sea View Trust).

As a passionate leader of SEND, Angela is a Regional Lead for WSS and is currently involved, cross-region, with an innovative and exciting project to outline SEND Careers pathways for the whole school workforce. Further to this, Angela remains highly committed to developing all staff, including identifying and supporting future leaders, whilst also championing the ‘Women in Leadership’ agenda.