Who are we

SHARE  Print Friendly and PDF

Who are we

The Trust is made up of a core team of dedicated staff across the education, HR, finance, resources, legal and support disciplines. The team of professionals, who all have a strong history of working in schools, with the DfE and local authorities include:

Karen Burns, Chief Executive and Executive Principal

Karen is an experienced Headteacher with a proven track record of school improvement.  Following a successful Deputy Headship involving amalgamation of two schools in Stockport, Karen's latest position as Headteacher was at St Peter's CE Primary School in Ashton. During her first 18 months at the school it rose from being in the bottom ranking for English to being in the top 1% of the country for progress across all subjects.  This fantastic achievement was acknowledged and celebrated by the Minister for Schools, David Laws MP.  In 2013 the school was selected as one of only 50 early year's settings in the UK to take part in an Ofsted 'Best Practice' survey and as a result their systems and structures featured in an Ofsted school improvement document highlighting best practice for school readiness.

Following a recommendation from an Ofsted Lead Inspector Karen has also taken part in discussions with Government ministers and the Chair of Ofsted regarding the way forward for improved practice across the country for early year's pupils.  Alongside her role overseeing the two Tameside Academies Karen continues to work for Tameside supporting schools and Karen is a pro-active member of many educational committees: presently taking the role of Secretary of the Tameside Primary Heads' Consortium. She also sits on the Tameside's Fair Access Panel and School's Forum.

Karen has been working with the Trust since April 2015 in the lead up to the opening of Inspire Academy.  Karen was appointed to lead the Trust in the role of Chief Executive for the Trust in January 2016.

David Thompstone, Trust Finance Manager

David takes the lead for the financal operation of the Trust and provides support for our academies.  David has over 20 years experience in the public education sector, having worked as a Senior Resource Manager at Tameside Council managing a team of financial support staff including the Schools Finance Support Service team and the Accountancy team before joining the Trust.

Nicky Wise, Trust Development Manager

Nicky takes the lead in the Project Management of the set-up and of developing sponsoring schools within the Trust ensuring links into the DfE, EFA, RSCs, within Carillion and the to the Trust Board and Local Governing Bodies.  Nicky is a fully qualified architect as well as being IOSH trained and takes the lead for operational issues within the Trust.  Nicky is currently focussing on HR / recruitment, marketing / stakeholder engagement and policies and procedures.

Nicky is a Governor on the Inspire Academy Local Governing Body and takes the lead for mentoring and development of Governors.  Nicky has worked in the public and private sector, successfully developing and delivering a wide range of education projects.  Nicky is a Trust Governor at a Foundation Trust Primary School and as well as being vice Chair takes the lead for Curriculum and Performance at the school.  The school was recently rated Outstanding and is now a Teaching School with the Head also becoming a National Leader of Education.