ACT Summer Conference Speakers
Keynote speaker: Jess Phillips, MP Birmingham Yardley
Jess Phillips is a Labour Party politician who became the MP for the constituency of Birmingham Yardley at the 2015 general election.
Jess has committed her life to improving the lives of others, especially the most vulnerable. Before becoming an MP, Jess worked for Women’s Aid in the West Midlands developing services for victims of domestic abuse, sexual violence, human trafficking and exploitation. She became a councillor in 2012, in this role she worked tirelessly to support residents, with her work being recognised when she became Birmingham's first ever Victims Champion.
Since becoming an MP, Jess has continued her fight to support those who need it the most and has earned a reputation for plain speaking since being elected, unfazed by threats and calling out sexist attitudes as she promotes women’s rights and focuses on ending violence against women and girls and on issues of justice and home affairs.
Jess is a bestselling author and has written three bestselling books. Her books focus on demystifying the worlds of politics and activism to encourage others to take back power and control.
Guest speaker: Stewart Vaughen, Headteacher, Priory Southsea Academy School
Stewart is Headteacher at Priory School, Southsea Academy. Priory School is a mixed 11-16 school located in Southsea with 1250 students on roll. They have a distinctive ethos that combines a prime focus on high achievement with a strong concern for the social development of each individual. Citizenship is delivered within PSCHE lessons at KS3 and as an option at GCSE level.
Supporter Speaker: Serdar Ferit, Co-founder and CEO, Lyfta
Serdar Ferit is the co-founder and CEO of Lyfta, a Finnish educational resource for teaching skills, values and global citizenship through immersive experiences. Prior to founding Lyfta, Serdar was an award-winning filmmaker, teacher and immersive experience designer.
Richard Addis, Founder and Editor, The Day
Richard Addis is the Founder and Editor of The Day, the digital newspaper for schools. Richard has been executive editor of the Daily Mail, editor of The Daily and Sunday Express, the Weekend FT and the European edition of Newsweek. He was deputy editor of The Sunday Telegraph and, outside the UK, was editor of The Globe and Mail in Canada. He still advises new organisations across the world. Every day he chairs an editorial conference with The Day’s team of writers to decide which stories will be covered. The stories are fact-checked each evening and published the following morning.
Zoe Backhouse, Head of Petitions Engagement, UK House of Commons
Zoe is Head of Petitions Engagement for the House of Commons Petitions Committee. She advises MPs on the Petitions Committee about how they can engage the public in their inquiries and debates on e-petitions, and she helps MPs engage with the public on issues raised in petitions through surveys, meetings and visits. Zoe leads on the communications sent to millions of petitioners each month which tell them about other work happening in Parliament on the issue that they care about. Previously, Zoe was the Second Clerk to the Procedure Committee, the Clerk of Public (paper) Petitions, and an Assistant Clerk on the Work and Pensions Committee, and she begin her work in the House after finishing university in 2019.
Terri Barry, ACT Ambassador- Sandwicknior High School
Terri gained her PGCE in RE and Citizenship at Oxford University where she pursued a Masters in Teaching and Learning focusing on assessment in Citizenship. She was Subject Lead of Citizenship, RE and PSHE at Brockhill Park Performing Arts College, Kent for 8 years until recently moving to Shetland where she now works as Principal Teacher of Additional Support Needs at Sandwick Junior High School. Terri is a member of the ACT council, contributes as an ambassador and works as a consultant with the Association of Citizenship Teachers ensuring she is involved in the development of citizenship education.
Tom Bigglestone, Online Learning Manager, The Economist Educational Foundation
Tom Bigglestone is a former Head of Humanities and is now Online Learning Manager at The Economist Educational Foundation. The Economist Educational Foundation is an independent charity that leverages the journalistic expertise of The Economist newspaper. They enable inspiring discussions about the news in, and between, schools. Discussions that invite young people to be curious about the world’s biggest ideas and challenges, and consider what should be done about them.
Dr Alison Body, University of Kent
Alison Body is a Senior Lecturer with the Centre for Philanthropy at the University of Kent and the Director of their MA Philanthropic Studies programme. Previously she worked as a CEO of a leading children’s charity and a lead Commissioning Officer for early intervention services, where she was an advocate for children's rights and participation and has significant experience of working closely with education, voluntary sector organisations and funders to deliver essential services which achieve maximum impact for children, families and communities, and respect children as experts of their own lives. Her research focuses on philanthropy, children, and education, with a particular interest in how children experience philanthropy and develop philanthropic behaviours.
Helen Griffin, PGCE, QTS, M.A. Ed.
Helen is an experienced teacher and has been working in the field of Global Learning for many
years running training for schools and ITE departments; managing curriculum development
projects and writing curriculum materials at DECSY. Over the last four years she has been working with teachers to develop and trial the teaching resources for the Non-Violent Action: A Force for Change project. These materials incorporate Philosophy for Children (P4C) approaches using Helen’s experience as a P4C trainer delivering SAPERE accredited level 1 and 2 training and working in schools since 2004. Helen is passionate about global citizenship education and the need to ensure that children and young people feel inspired and empowered to take action for change in the face of potentially overwhelming global challenges.
Kate Harris, Co-founder & CEO VotesforSchools
Kate began her teaching career in 2000 and very quickly found a passion for Citizenship, PSHE, and student voice. As an Assistant Headteacher overseeing Citizenship and PSHE Kate really felt the need for Citizenship teaching to be well resourced in schools and how outstanding Citizenship education can change whole school cultures for the better. However, her time in this role also showed the practical struggles to get whole staff buy-in and to get the resources it needs to be the powerful subject it should be. Kate left teaching in 2014 to follow her dream of finding a way to support schools in developing SMSC & British Values, making it engaging to children and young people, and getting students to discuss the biggest issues affecting them today. Kate's Citizenship teaching days also developed her desire to see young people becoming more involved in democracy and voting. Kate co-founded VotesforSchools which enables any teacher regardless of subject or experience to feel confident to discuss tricky subjects and then vote, VotesforSchools takes this voting data and uses it to inform influential people and groups about what young people think and feel about a variety of political issues.
Professor Bryony Hoskins, Comparative Social Science at the University of Roehampton
Professor Bryony Hoskins has a chair in Comparative Social Science at the University of Roehampton. She is an internationally renowned expert on citizenship education specialising in political socialization across Europe. Her latest book is on Education, Democracy and Inequality: Political Engagement and Citizenship Education in Europe and is published by Palgrave Macmillan. Professor Hoskins has an excellent track record regarding funding. Recent funded research projects are on Post-16 Educational Trajectories and Social Inequalities in Political Engagement (Funded by the Nuffield Foundation), Effective education interventions for teaching and learning European Citizenship for disadvantaged young people (funded by Robert Bosch Foundation) and Measuring Life Skills and Citizenship Education in the Middle East and North Africa (funded by UNICEF). She is part of ESRC LLAKES research centre based at UCL. Professor Hoskins has previously led EU funded research whilst employed at the University of Southampton that explored the effects of the economic crisis on Active Citizenship in the EU. Prior to this and when employed at IoE/UCL she led the ESRC funded comparative research on Inequalities that explored the effects of different country education systems on civic attitudes.
Jan Germen Janmaat, Professor of political socialization at IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education & Society
Jan Germen Janmaat is a professor of political socialization at IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education & Society. He is interested in how education, broadly conceived, can influence civic competences, values and behaviors and has published widely on this topic. He is currently working on a Nuffield funded project on post-16 educational trajectories and social inequalities in political engagement. His latest book is Education, Democracy and Inequality: Political Engagement and Citizenship Education in Europe (Palgrave, 2019), co-authored with Bryony Hoskins.
Dr Lee Jerome, Research consultant, Middlesex University
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.
Catrina Kirkland, Holocaust Educational Trust
Catrina Kirkland trained as a History teacher just as Citizenship was being introduced into the National Curriculum, and has since taught both subjects in comprehensives in London, leading the teaching of both as a Head of Department and Head of Year. She completed her Master’s in History and Citizenship Education in 2010, and her dissertation explored approaches to teaching about the Holocaust in these different yet related subjects. She left teaching in 2011 to research students’ existing ideas about the Holocaust and how they utilise these in the Key Stage 3 history classroom. Her findings are soon to be submitted as a PhD thesis. Whilst researching, she worked as a freelance educator for the Jewish Museum (Camden), the Imperial War Museums (London) and the Holocaust Educational Trust. She became an Education Officer for the Trust in 2016 and works primarily in their teacher training programme.
Dr Emily Lau, University of Kent
Dr Emily Lau is a post-doctoral researcher working with Dr Alison Body’s on the ESRC project looking at Philanthropic Citizenship and Primary School Children. Emily’s PhD was an ethnography exploring the gendered experience of school-based social action. Emily has co-authored numerous research articles and reports in relation to children, young people, giving and education. Her research interests are the ways children and young people are engaged in giving, volunteering and social action through educational experiences of citizenship and moral education. Emily is also interested in social inequalities and the way children and young people’s experiences can be determined by gender, class and race. Previously Emily was a Senior Lecturer at Canterbury Christ Church looking at the relationship between education and the third sector. She also has international teaching experience and worked for six years at Envision, a citizenship education charity, whose mission it was to work with young people in their communities by empowering them to tackle real-life social problems.
Sikhumbuzo Ndlovu, Hinde House Secondary Academy
Sikhumbuzo Ndlovu is responsible for the deliverance of PSHCE at Hinde House Secondary Academy in Sheffield. He was part of group of practitioners who contributed, developed, and trialled the Non-Violent Action: A force for Change teaching and learning materials. He is passionate about taking the learning experiences of students beyond the four walls.
Leon Oldstrong, Writer and Director, www.leonoldstrong.com/
Leon is a self-taught London based filmmaker. He has a reputation for being unflinchingly honest in addressing racism and injustice. His short documentary That's Not Ours premiered at Sheffield Doc / Fest in 2018. The film is a deeply personal exploration of racist media stereotypes and the consequences faced by young black men and boys as a result all framed around Leon's younger brother Ethan - an innocent victim of knife crime. Leon is passionate about telling stories that challenge stereotypes and change perceptions. Virtually There was an official selection of the prestigious BFI London Film Festival and Aesthetica Short Film Festival. His most recent documentary, Weather, which explores the reality of racism for Black Britons during the Covid-19 lockdown was recently released on Al Jazeera.
Hans Svennevig, Subject Leader PGCE Citizenship, IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education & Society
Hans leads PGCE Citizenship at IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education and Society. He is a member of ACT Council, and part of the editorial board of Teaching Citizenship. Hans has worked in schools, Further Education Colleges and charities having started teaching citizenship in 2003. He is involved in a range of Citizenship, peace and disaster risk reduction projects working with academics and practitioners. Hans first became aware of the power of Leon’s work when introducing The Fair Trade movie to his student teachers in 2019, one of whom developed lesson materials for the film: www.fairtrademovie.co.uk/
Hugh Starkey, Professor of Citizenship and Human Rights Education, IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education & Society
Hugh Starkey is Professor of Citizenship and Human Rights Education at IOE, UCL’S Faculty of Education and Society. His research interests are education for democratic citizenship and human rights education (EDC / HRE) developed in an intercultural perspective. He is co-convenor, with Audrey Osler of the World Educational Research Association’s International Research Network on Human Rights Education. He is editor of London Review of Education. His latest book (2021), co-authored with Lee Jerome, is Children's Rights Education in Diverse Classrooms: Pedagogy, principles and practice. He has led major European-funded projects on citizenship and human rights education and has acted as a consultant for several governments and the Council of Europe, UNESCO, European Commission and the British Council. His current and recently completed doctoral students research citizenship and intercultural education in contexts including East Asia, Middle East, Latin America and Europe.