Heads of Educational Provisions
Brunel Academies Trust (Brunel) are proud to have an inspiring and dedicated team of Head Teachers of our schools, Manager of our Nursery, Heads of Service, and Principal of our College that lead our teams.
Heads of Educational Provisions (ID 1141)
Claire MorrisActing Headteacher, The Chalet School
Dave DearlseyHeadteacher, Churchward School
Having completed a degree in sport and physical education, Dave started working as a teaching assistant in a specialist provision for students with emotional and behavioural difficulties.Dave found working with hard to reach children incredibly rewarding and decided that he wanted to complete his teacher training whilst continuing to work in special education. From there Dave has worked in a range of special school settings including pupil referral units, SEMH provisions and independent autism specialist schools fulfilling a range of roles through to his current position of Head Teacher at Churchward School.
As a teacher, Dave specialised in PE and Maths but also taught a range of other subjects including Science and English to a range of students. Throughout his career he has encouraged students to believe in themselves and has used outdoor education as a key part of this, using the countryside as a vehicle to build confidence and self-esteem. He has set up and run Forest School programmes and taken students climbing, mountain biking and kayaking as well as completing a residential sailing trip to the Channel Islands.
Whilst in various Senior Leadership positions Dave has been responsible for pastoral, safeguarding, teaching & learning and assessment as well as always taking responsibility for developing new areas whether that be introducing a range of therapeutic interventions or supporting the growth of a school and ensuring consistency and high standards.
Always looking to challenge himself and the team around him, Dave has relished the chance to set a new school up from scratch and is looking forward to whatever the future holds for Churchward School.
Outside of school Dave looks forward to spending time with his partner and their new son whilst also continuing with his enjoyment of being outdoors including taking care of their horses.
David StevensHeadteacher, Uplands School
I grew up in Somerset where I began my career as anEngineering apprentice which led me in to studying Engineering at University. Engineering, as interesting as it is didn’t feel like the right direction that I wanted to progress my career into post graduation. I always had an interest in people and teaching so made the decision to train to become a Design and Technology teacher. I undertook my initial teacher training in Exeter before moving to Swindon to take up my first teaching post.
I thoroughly enjoyed my mainstream experience teaching Design and Technology, I found it hugely rewarding. Whilst working in a main stream setting I took on additional responsibility for careers and work related learning, which included organising work experience for the whole of Yr10 as well as whole school training. As part of my teaching committment I taught a group of students who were following a preparation for work pathway where I gave them lots of opportunities to visit local employers and work with them on getting them work ready. So, from an early stage in my career I was drawn to support students who needed some additional support. After six great years I made the decision to look at what other teaching opportunities there were where I could focus more on working with students who needed additional support, which brought me to Uplands in 2011.
Starting work in a special school was instantly rewarding, I enjoyed the challenges and rewards in equal measures, the staff and students were, and always have been genuinely inspirational. Over time I took on additional responsibility and moved into Middle leadership, Senior leadership and from September 2022 was very proud to be made substantive Headteacher.Prior to Headship my areas of responsibility have mainly been around behaviour, attainment and Safeguarding, although being part of a leadership team is a very diverse role which has drawn me into a whole array of different activities.
Out of school I enjoy spending time with my partner and young family. I enjoy the outdoors, running andwalking and when I get the chance I play the trumpet in a local Orchestra.
Sarah SumnerHeadteacher, Westlea Primary School
I am married with 3 grown up children and a wonderful ‘woof’ called Coco. Two of my passions are outdoor learning and horses, which I am able to indulge by spending time with my horse called ‘Kiwi’. Since I was a child, I have been involved in my local church and music has always played a key aspect of my life.
My childhood was spent in Gloucester and North Wales. Both of my parents were teachers and my father was a Headteacher. I attended Ribston Hall Grammar School, where my interests in music were significantly enhanced. Despite wanting to attend Music or Teacher Training College, I was encouraged to complete something ‘academic’ and ended up at Birmingham University.
When I graduated from University I initially trained as a Stock-Taker for ‘Moorland Brewery’ and then moved into Internal Audit, ending up at Swindon Borough Council. Finally, in 2003 I handed in ‘my calculator’ and completed a PGCE in Middle Years with Music at Bath Spa University College.
The opportunity to teach at Westlea was destined to be and really was ‘fate’. I had two job interviews on the same day, so the interview at Westlea was moved forward and the rest is history. For the first 10 years I predominantly taught Year 6 and was recognized as a Lead Teacher for Music and KS2 Maths, by Swindon Borough Council.
I have completed both the National Qualification in Senior Leadership and The National Qualification in Headship, including being a mentor for both qualifications. Following another deliberate career change, in 2016 I moved into KS1 to immerse myself in Early Years and formative education.
Throughout my career I have always championed the children that find school difficult and am committed to providing ‘inclusion for all’. I led the school to achieve the Gold Healthy School Award on three separate occasions, by connecting outdoor learning, positive engagement and the primary curriculum. My Master’s Dissertation was based on my Healthy Schools work and in 2018 I was awarded the Postgraduate Health and Education scholarship from Middlesex University.
I am privileged to be the Headteacher at Westlea and have watched the school grow and develop into a wonderful community school. In 2021, I opened the Nursery class and in September 2022, the Commissioned Unit for Complex Needs.
Genti MullaliuPrincipal, Horizons College
I was born in Albania and lived there for 24 years prior to moving to United Kingdom, I studied Medicine and graduated in 1997 from the University of Tirana. Due to meeting my future wife, I moved to the United Kingdom where we were married and have lived in the UK since.
My experience in education and training developed after success with training in the FE and secondary school sector. I have always been ambitious for the learners and staff which allowed me to focus my energy and commitment into my future in the education arena and as a result develop learners with many different skills in different curriculums.
During this time, I completed my studies in Post Compulsory Education with Oxford Brookes University. I have also successfully completed the Senior Management and Leadership Development programme delivered by the Association of Colleges, an outstanding programme of study designed for Principals and aspiring Principals.
Previous to this position, I taught for 16 years within a General Further Education College working primarily with learners with special educational needs and complex behavioural difficulties within the Vocational Studies and Foundation Learning Department. I joined Uplands Educational Trust in 2014 and became Head of College in 2015 and subsequently appointed as Principal in 2017.
My journey to this point has been one presented with amazing opportunities and of striving to achieve my best potential despite challenges. Therefore, I have made it my aim to provide an inclusive and innovative learning environment for all our learners, giving them the opportunities to excel to their full potential in developing their independence despite the barriers presented to them.
Outside of work I like keeping a healthy active lifestyle. I enjoy running, cycling, paddle boarding and sea fishing. I love camping and driving therefore enjoy taking long road trips in the summer with my family in our campervan. I also lead a small local church and my faith it is very important to me and through this I have been able to support charitable educational projects in Burkina Faso, Albania and Nagaland (India).
Mark WisemanBASIS Acting Head of Service
Jo-Ann Nicol CobbAll Aboard Nursery Manager
Jo-Ann Nicol Cobb
Tina MaskellCo-Headteacher of Exeter House School
Yasmine JohnstonCo-Headteacher of Exeter House School
Helen FielderHeadteacher, Wyndham Park Infant's and St Marks CofE Junior School