The ACT team
The team at ACT have a wealth of specialist citizenship, education and managment experience and are dedicated to developing high quality citizenship education and supporting ACT members. Staff work closely with our Council of Teachers, Editorial team for our journal, 'Teaching Citizenship' and our Board of Trustees.
Tel: 07595 293899
Address: Association for Citizenship Teaching, Suite 281 Hill House, 210 Upper Richmond Road, London SW15 6NP
Based in London
“Working with citizenship teachers is inspirational and shows the power and impact of high quality subject teaching for young people every day.”
Liz leads the Charity, working with our Board, Teacher Council and staff and overseeing key programmes including the Five Nations Network in the UK and Ireland. She has a MSc Politics and Public Policy from Birkbeck London and a BA Hons Geography with Archaeology from Manchester University. Liz has worked in education for over twenty years and led the development of Citizenship as a new curriculum subject in previous roles for central government at the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority. Liz is on a number of advisory boards including the Industry Advisory Board to the University of Westminster. She is also the Department for Education's UK representative to the Council of Europe Education Policy Network on Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights and a member of the Advisory Board on Democratic Resilience with the Wergeland Centre and the Council of Europe.
Outside of work, Liz is an avid Watford FC fan, and enjoys ballet, tea and cake.
Head of Education and Professional Development
Based in Kent
“The reason I love Citizenship education and continue to be inspired by the subject is seeing the impact it has on young people. There is nothing greater than awakening the possibility to a young person that they have the chance to change the world.“
Zoe leads on the development and delivery of professional learning, working with a range of agencies and our Regional Ambassadors. She works in close partnership with Kirsty, our Head of Resources, to ensure that our teachers have a wealth of material to draw on to support their roles in school. Zoe’s qualifications include a History and Social Science BA hons, PGCE, and Fellowship of Holocaust Education. She also works on the ITT programme at Canterbury Christ Church University, and she has been a teacher in Kent for over 20 years, as well as an ACT teaching advisor. Zoe is also a freelance educator at the Holocaust Educational Trust, working on the Lessons From Auschwitz Project and accompanying survivors into schools to deliver their testimony.
Outside of work Zoe attempts to run, enjoys a ballet class and spoils her cat Dennis who sometimes drops into CPD webinars.
Head of Learning Resources
Based in Weymouth
“What inspires me most is seeing young people inspired and engaged by their active citizenship campaigns, communicating with members of the wider community and changemakers, and watching them nurture the future society that they will be living in.”
Kirsty works closely with Zoe, our Head of Education, and outside agencies to produce a range of teaching and learning resources for use in the classroom and other settings. Kirsty’s qualifications include BA Three dimensional design, PGCE, Diploma in Performance Coaching (Education) 2001, Certificate of Achievement in PSHE with Sex and Relationships Education 2006, and a National Citizenship CPD Programme 2009. Before joining the team, she was a Subject Leader for Citizenship, PSHE and RS.
In her spare time Kirsty enjoys vitreous enamelling and silversmithing, sailing, photography, audiobooks, art and music.
Head of Engagement
Based in Southwest England
“'I have not met one person who has said Citizenship is not important (even if I have had to explain the subject); I want everyone to recognise it, do it complete justice, and that way students will be empowered to change their futures.”
Clare leads engagement and communication across member and school networks. She has a BA Business Management and PGCE in Citizenship and Over 10 years' experience in the education sector, including secondary schools setting, post 16-18 and higher education. Clare is a qualified Citizenship Teacher and was a Head of Department for Citizenship and PSHE in a London secondary school. More recently, she has worked to support student progression to university within a legal specialist provider.
Outside of work, Clare enjoys wild swimming and paddle boarding.
Director of Programme Operations
Based in Oxfordshire
“I've spent the past 15 years witnessing the profound impact that citizenship education can have on young people, teaching approaches and on school and local communities. Citizenship education helps to connect young people with the world around them and inspires them to participate in our democracy, challenge injustice and lead change. Looking at the challenges we face in society, there's never been a greater need for high quality citizenship education to be taught in schools.”
Richard leads and develops programme operations that contribute to increased awareness of the role and value of Citizenship education, and aids practitioners nationwide to embed the subject in their schools. He works closely with colleagues and strategic partners, and supports ACT's communications, operations and business development. Richard has a BSc in Sports and Exercise Science and was a Director of Partnerships and Communications at Young Citizens - a youth empowerment and participation charity. He has also performed extensive outreach work in over 300 secondary schools and managed national and international citizenship education programmes. He is a volunteer at the British Red Cross and a long-term volunteer with One Degree, which empowers students from less advantaged backgrounds by developing their self-belief and transforming their academic performance.
Outside of work Richard loves watersports and tennis, long walks in the Oxfordshire countryside, a cozy pub, a cone of chips and family time.
Events and Membership Coordinator
Based in London
“Citizenship is about making your community a better place for everyone! It teaches all of us about empathy, respect, and responsibility.”
Erin supports the team by organising the membership and events admin, including membership data and communications. She also uses her creative side to produce engaging content for our audience. Erin has a Bachelors in Human Development and Family Sciences from Oregon State University and for the past 5 years she has worked in membership and database administration for non-profit organisations in London.
In her spare time, she loves staying active, from surfing to dodgeball to rock climbing, and she is a passionate artist.
Dr Lee Jerome
Based in London
“We should not underestimate the challenge, nor should we underestimate our collective potential as teachers to make the world a better place, for and through our students.”
Lee is leading our research team on the ACT active citizenship programme, and he coordinates the research and evaluates the impact of ACT's work. Lee also edits the journal 'Education, Citizenship and Social Justice' and he is co-editor of 'Teaching Citizenship'. He has a PhD Citizenship Education, MA Colonial and Post-colonial History, and PGCE Social Science. For the past 18 years, Lee has worked in higher education training teachers, running MA and CPD programmes, and supervising doctoral students. He was also Education Director at the Institute for Citizenship. And he was a history and sociology teacher in secondary schools.
In his spare time, Lee loves history and cooking (and eating).
Based in London
“The current political landscape highlights the urgency of effective Citizenship Education and the importance of student voice. I feel passionately about developing critical thinking skills in children and young people enabling them to become active, empathetic, informed citizens who can make positive and fulfilling contributions to society.”
Faiza is on our research team for the ACT active citizenship programme and she contributes to the collection, analysis and reporting of data from students and teachers, ensuring all research and evaluation activities adhere to ethical standards. Faiza has a MA in Childhood and Education in Diverse Societies from Middlesex University and has worked as a Primary School teacher in the London boroughs of Barnet and Islington for 10 years.
In her spare time, she enjoys tennis, fashion and music.
Based in London
“Better informed citizens means a better society.”
Yaqub is on our research team for the ACT active citizenship programme and he contributes to the collection, analysis and reporting of data from students and teachers, ensuring all research and evaluation activities adhere to ethical standards. His qualifications include an MA in Islamic and Middle East Studies from the University of Edinburgh and a Certificate in Teaching from the Chicago Center for Teaching at the University of Chicago, where he also studied anthropology. Yaqub Previously worked as a lecturer and preceptor in the Division of Social Sciences at the University of Chicago.
In his spare time he enjoys cycling.
ACT Board of Trustees
Scott Harrison (Chair of Trustees)
Scott was a teacher of history and politics, LEA adviser, Chief Examiner (history) and textbook author before becoming an HMI in 1990. Scott represented Ofsted on the Citizenship Advisory Group chaired by Professor (Sir) Bernard Crick and was the specialist adviser for citizenship at Ofsted until his retirement in 2009. He was responsible for the inspection survey of citizenship in schools and also for inspection of citizenship initial teacher education and continuing professional development. He now works as an education consultant. Scott joined the ACT Board of Trustees in 2013.
Rob Pope (Vice Chair of Trustees)
Rob has extensive experience of post-16 education as a teacher and manager and in national staff training and curriculum development roles. For seven years he was Development Manager for the Post-16 Citizenship Support Programme. Prior to that Rob taught sociology and citizenship studies at Richmond-upon-Thames College, where he was also Head of Department and managed a pilot programme on active citizenship. Rob is a founder and director of Active Citizens FE, a new support network for staff involved with citizenship education, social action and learner voice in post-16 education. Rob joined the ACT Board of Trustees in 2013.
Asjad Mir (Treasurer)
Asjad is a fellow member of ACCA and a member of the Chartered IIA, UK with considerable experience of working with professional services firms, public sector organisations, and commercial entities. He has specialist expertise in provision of professional services such as governance, internal audit and risk management. Asjad assumed responsibility for managing internal audit and accounting functions for various commercial businesses and joined the ACT Board of Trustees in January 2021.
Marcus is Head of School of Education, Midwifery and Social Work at Kingston University London and a member of the University’s Senior Leadership Group. He has strategic responsibility for all areas of the School’s work, including its course portfolio, research and its partnerships with schools, government and industry. He is a former London secondary school teacher of history, politics and citizenship and led one of the first discrete citizenship departments in England. He has been a member of two subject expert panels for national curriculum citizenship and led a three year exemplification of standards in citizenship project for QCDA. From 2007-2013, he led a Citizenship PGCE at London Metropolitan University. Marcus continues to write and research in the subject area. Marcus joined the ACT Board of Trustees in 2019.
Richard is a senior lecturer in law at the University of Wolverhampton with over 20 years of experience working in Higher Education. He is a qualified solicitor and formerly practised in criminal law before becoming an academic. His research interests are in protest law, human rights and the law of criminal evidence, and he is the author of a number of publications on these subjects. Richard has a longstanding interest in citizenship studies due to his involvement in legal education and as a result of studying politics and sociology in Bernard Crick’s department at Birkbeck University of London. Richard joined the ACT Board of Trustees in January 2021.
Sarah has worked in a range of public sector roles ranging from legal aid policy to leading the team responsible for including citizenship education in the National Curriculum. Since then she has worked on a wide range of education policies such as examination reforms, school building projects and vocational education. For the last five years Sarah has worked at the Cabinet Office. She was recently seconded as Director of Strategy and Governance at the Equalities and Human Rights Commission. She is currently Director Devolved Administrations, NHS Test and Trace. Sarah has job shared for over ten years and supports flexible working. She is a primary school governor. Sarah joined the ACT Board of Trustees in 2019.
Helen has more than 25 years' experience in editorial and senior leadership roles at the BBC, including 10 setting up and leading BBC News School Report – a journalism project involving half of UK secondary schools. She has also worked for two MPs, was a local councillor in London and has led two youth charities – one as Chair and the other as Managing Director. Helen joined the ACT Board of Trustees in 2017.
Helen Blachford, Chair of ACT Council
Helen is an experienced teacher and is currently the Curriculum Leader for Citizenship and PSHE at Priory School, a large secondary school in Southsea, Hampshire. In addition she has responsibility for Pupil Voice and Pupil Leadership. Helen initially trained as a secondary teacher in Business Education but has been involved in Citizenship education for over 20 years. She has been a committed member of ACT Council since 2012 and has helped to plan the ACT national conference, written articles for the journal and worked on curriculum briefings to support teachers and Citizenship professionals with the new National Curriculum. Helen is also a member of the Expert Subject Group for Citizenship and has contributed to the Five Nations Network as a country expert for England. Helen became Chair of ACT Council in 2015. ACT Council comprises teachers and educators who are vonluteers that help us shape and deliver our work. Helen joined the Board in June 2020.
Hans Svennevig, Vice Chair ACT Council and Co-Editor of Teaching Citizenship
Hans is Senior Teaching Fellow in Citizenship Education and Subject Leader Citizenship PGCE at UCL Institute of Education. Previously while delivering teacher training he led and managed several degree courses within a FE/HE setting. Hans was trained in Citizenship Education and has taught a range of secondary subjects including Citizenship GCSE and A-Levels in Citizenship and Politics. He has been a Head of Citizenship in a school in Luton and a large London FE College. Hans has also worked in the third sector creating and developing educational resources, teacher training and student workshops. Hans is involved in numerous projects to promote citizenship values across different teaching sectors. He has been a member of ACT Council since 2014 and became Vice Chair in 2017. In 2018 he became co-editor of ACT journal 'Teaching Citizenship'. Hans joined the ACT Board in June 2020.
ACT Journal Editorial Board
Lee Jerome, Lead Editor of Teaching Citizenship and Chair of ACT HE network
Lee is Associate Professor in Education at Middlesex University. Lee trained as secondary teacher in Social Studies and taught History and Sociology for several years before moving to the HE sector, where he taught on PGCE programmes, as well as a variety of CPD & MA courses. Lee has been involved with ACT since it began in 2001 and served on the Board of Trustees and was Chair of Council until April 2013. Lee is co-editor of the ACT journal 'Teaching Citizenship'.
Hans Svennevig, Co-Editor of Teaching Citizenship
David Kerr Co-Editor of Teaching Citizenship
David is Head of Intial Teacher Education at the University of Reading. He was previously a Programme Director of Research at the National Foundation for Educational Research where he led the 10 year longitudinal study on Citizenship in England and its impact. He has previously been an adviser to the DFE, worked internationally on research projects including the International Civic and Citizenship Education Study, and has written extensively on Citizenship education. He became Co-Editor of the ACT journal 'Teaching Citizenship' in 2018.
ACT Teaching Ambassadors
Ambassadors work in regional hubs to support citizenship teachers locally.