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Illuminate Minds Academy Trust home page
Illuminate Minds Academy Trust home page

Illuminate Minds Trust

Excellence Every Day

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Meet our Team

Ms J. Southby - Chief Executive Officer


I am delighted to have taken up the post of CEO / Executive Head Teacher of the Illuminate Minds Trust.  I have been in teaching for over thirty years with the last twenty years as Head Teacher / Executive Head Teacher.  My career has spanned mainstream schools, special schools and alternative provision as well as leading multi-disciplinary teams in residential settings.  My passion is working with school leaders in developing and growing their teams, creating systems and structures which support pupils making exceptional progress and, most importantly, building a curriculum which encourages children to engage in their learning, experience success and enjoyment!  I want our schools to be places where pupils are able to expand their knowledge, widen opportunities beyond their lived experiences and make positive memories which will enable them to flourish and grow as they move on in life.  As a National Leader of Education, I am committed to collaboration and continual professional development to ensure that our staff become the best they can be which, in turn, improves the quality of our school provision and the educational experience of our pupils.  My ambition is that our Trust is aspirational and aims high for all of our pupils, recognises their strengths and areas for development and values each child as an individual.  Ultimately, I am here to promote the ethos of “excellence everyday” and ensuring that every child who attends our schools meets their potential whilst feeling valued, cared for and positively challenged to achieve their best! 



Ms A Smith - HR Director 


I began my HR career just over 20 years ago and have specialised in the Education sector for the past 10 years. My most recent full-time role, was HR Director of a large multi academy trust but I have worked in all settings within the sector including, nursery, primary, secondary, 6th Form and University, where I have experienced different challenges for both the leadership teams and the whole staff body. In addition, I have volunteered as a school governor for a total of 11 years, giving me the insight from the other side of leadership. I always strive to be fair, consistent and to provide leaders and staff Member of the CIPD, the accreditation body for HR professionals. 


In addition, I have various qualifications in counselling, line management and other areas of CPD.


Ms Beverley Evans - Director of Safeguarding, Inclusion and SEND.


Ms L Reynolds - Attendance, Safeguarding and Engagement Lead 


I am excited to become part of the team as Attendance, Safeguarding and Engagement Lead at Illuminate Minds Trust.  My journey into education started with working in a pre-school where I completed early years training, I then progressed to manage and open my own pre-school.  Following that I went onto working with alternative provisions working with Years 10 and 11 which I have done for the last 20 years, completing my QTLS then progressing to Assistant Head Teacher and also being a designated safeguarding officer.  


I am passionate about my job, across the trust we aim to provide a warm, welcoming safe environment which provides a supportive encouraging place for learning.  I believe education is key to children's success in life, regular attendance is important to vie them the best possible start so they can progress. 


Miss K. Anderson - Associate Senior Trust Lead for Research and Professional Development


I am passionate about beating educational disadvantage, so that no child's education, aspirations and future should be limited by their socioeconomic background. It was this that inspired me to change careers from Construction Management to Education, having mentored many apprentices who had felt that they had to settle for a job, rather than aspire to be whoever they wanted to be. My own values aligned with that of the charity Teach First, and I joined them to train to become a teacher after five years as a Site Manager.


I have always enjoyed academic study, whether it was at undergraduate or masters level, and my role as Associate Senior Trust Lead for Research and Professional Development gives me the opportunity to carry out research into evidence-based teaching and learning, and also to help develop our Trust staff to enable our learners to experience Excellence Every Day in the classroom.


As part of my role, I will be implementing coaching groups and developing the teaching staff to work smarter, so that we can have an even greater impact on the children we teach. It is an exciting role and I am thrilled to be part of such a forward-thinking and child-centred Multi Academy Trust.


Miss J. Cousins - Phonics & Early Reading Lead


It began with teaching my dolls the ABCs, but my interest in education has long endured the days of Barbie & Ken! I started my journey as a teaching assistant whilst completing my degree in education. Over the course of nine years, I have strived to inspire and motivate others, provide children with a safe, welcoming, and engaging school environment and to cultivate a love of learning that will create lifelong learners. My background is predominantly in EYFS & Key Stage 1 where I have led for a number of years. I am passionate about promoting Phonics & Early Reading, to create fluent, confident and independent readers.


I am delighted to be part of a trust that corresponds to my core values of inclusion, collaboration, openness, and ambition. As a member of the local community myself, I am pleased to be part of a trust that continually strives to improve the experiences for children and the communities that they serve, puts pupil and staff wellbeing at the heart, and champions staff development on the journey to excellence.


Mr S. Robinson - Quality Teaching and Learning Lead 


I am incredibly proud to work at Illuminate Minds Trust and lead on teaching and learning. I have worked in the education sector for a number of years and have loved every minute. I have a passion for ensuring the children that we serve are given the best possible life chances, I believe that instilling a love for learning, building character, promoting independence and enabling children to develop their knowledge and skills should be at the heart of any primary school.

I am an accredited coach and believe in empowering all members of our school community to be the best that they can be and to see the champion within themselves. I am a values driven leader and work hard to ensure positive relationships are made with the communities that we serve, ensuring that our schools are safe, happy and nurturing places for all stakeholders. 

I am currently studying for my Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and I am reading around educational initiatives extensively to further better my own practice. I am an advocate for staff development and ensuring all staff members are able to offer excellence to our children.  I am also a trustee for The Galaxy trust.


Ultimately, I work within education to ensure that all children in our care receive excellence every day are happy and bright individuals whilst dreaming big for the future.


Executive Business Support Officer




Mrs L. Devincenzi-Hume - Executive Business Support PA


I am a PA with over 19 years administration experience where I have worked within a broad range of sectors including Media, advertising and most recently within Children's Social Services and Education.


I have gained a wealth of knowledge in supporting individuals and teams, thinking ahead to ensure the day can run more efficiently, with communication being at the heart of everything I do.


Since working within the Education Sector it has sparked a real interest for being in a more meaningful, child centred working environment. I have made it a priority to have an excellent understanding of Safeguarding to help create that respectful and safe education environment.


I am excited to start my role within Illuminate Minds Trust, supporting the CEO, as I share the Trust's Vision, that children and young people are at the heart of their communities. To know that children are encouraged to be curious, dream big and have a voice during their time at the schools within the Trust, is such an inspiring and positive environment, one that I'm proud to become a part of.


School Improvement Team


Mr B. Simber - School Improvement Partner


My experience in education includes headship roles in the United Kingdom and abroad. I work with several Trusts, supporting senior and middle leaders to drive and secure improvements in teaching and learning, and in standards and outcomes. I support and mentor headteachers in several schools and I am a Lead Inspector with Ofsted.


I work collaboratively with senior and middle leaders at the Illuminate Minds Trust to recognise and celebrate strengths in current practice, and to identify the actions to further improve the outcomes for the pupils at Pelham and Fairford. Leaders and I have jointly undertaken reviews across a range of subjects, and we have ensured that pupil voice has been an important aspect of our work.


It has been most pleasing that leaders at Illuminate Minds Trust share with me the mantra that 'whatever we do in schools must be to improve outcomes and life chances for the pupils'. I am excited about the journey the Trust is on and am proud to be supporting leaders on that journey.

Illuminate Minds Trust Staffing Structure

Contact Us

Illuminate Minds Trust, Pelham Road, Bexleyheath, Kent, DA7 4HL

Telephone: 02083 036556 Email: