Honours

Trust chair knighted and ex-Ofqual chief gets CBE in King’s birthday honours

48 people honoured for their work in the schools community in England

48 people honoured for their work in the schools community in England

The former chair of England’s largest academy trust will be knighted in the King’s birthday honours and a former head of Ofqual will receive the CBE.

Richard Greenhalgh, who recently stood down as chair of the group board at United Learning after nine years, is one of 48 people honoured for their work in the schools community in England.

The citation for Richard’s award “highlights his contribution to United Learning, his founding role in the National College for School Leadership and his chairing of Hope and Homes for Children and British Youth Opera”, the trust said.

Richard Greenhalgh

Sir Jon Coles, United Learning’s chief executive, said it was “fitting that Richard has been awarded this honour as his tenure as chair comes to an end”.

“He has played an immensely important role in our success over the past decade and has committed enormous time, expertise and energy to our group and to the other causes that he supports.

“This award is testament to his dedication to supporting young people and to the pursuit of excellence in our education system and to his impact on our development as an organisation.”

Gong for ex-Ofqual chief

Dr Jo Saxton, the former chief regulator of Ofqual, is to receive the CBE, while Reuben Moore, executive director of programmes at the National Institute of Teaching will receive the MBE.

Dr Jo Saxton
Dr Jo Saxton

Saxton, now chief executive of the University and College Admissions Service, said it had been a “privilege to serve as chief regulator”.

One of her highlights was “being able to give students what they were asking for as we emerged from the pandemic – namely, independently assessed and normally graded exams”. 

“I am particularly proud of the work we did to support disabled students with reasonable adjustments.”

Moore said it was “humbling to receive this recognition”.

“Throughout my career, I’ve just wanted to be useful, and my focus has always been on helping teachers and leaders to thrive in their roles. By doing that, we can support thousands of children, improving their life chances and helping them succeed.”

OBEs for academy trust CEOs

Among those honoured for their work with England’s schools, 13 are academy trust CEOs or executive heads, nine are governors or trustees, nine work in the charity or third sectors and six are civil servants.

Karen Bramwell

Honours have also gone to six headteachers or principals, two deputy or assistant heads, two support staff and one teacher.

Karen Bramwell, CEO of the Forward As One Church of England Multi-Academy Trust, will receive the OBE. She said she was “thrilled” to accept the honour “on behalf of everyone within our trust family”.

“Throughout my career, I have been privileged to work with exceptional people and the success of our trust is due to the collaboration, commitment and vocation that our talented team shares in improving educational outcomes and opportunities for young people.”

She added that schools were “uniquely positioned to build stronger local communities. Excellent education empowers every young person, giving them the essential tools they need to take forward to identify and achieve their goals, turning around the fortunes of underprivileged areas over time”.

‘Humbled’

Tracy Swinburne
Tracy Swinburne

Tracy Swinburne, CEO of the Accomplish MAT, said she was “truly humbled to be receiving an OBE”.

“I have been so lucky to work with some amazing teams, communities and trustees throughout my career. This award is dedicated to them. I would also like to thank the children that drive my work every day and are also deserving of this accolade.”

Tina Lovey, who leads Rivermead Inclusive Trust in Medway, will also receive the OBE.

Tina Lovey

“After getting over the initial shock and feeling very emotional and delighted all at the same time, I reflected that this is not just about the recipient, this is ultimately for the children that I serve.

“I really hope that colleagues see that this honour is for every single person who works at Rivermead Inclusive Trust – the wonderful, compassionate, and hard-working staff that work to make children and young people’s lives enhanced each day.”

Lorrayne Hughes, chief executive of Cumbria Education Trust, will also receive the OBE.

Lorrayne Hughes

She said she was “delighted to have been recognised in the King’s Birthday Honours; it is great acknowledgement of all that we have achieved at Cumbria Education Trust.

“It has been my honour to serve so many fantastic young people and to raise the quality of education working alongside some of the most dedicated, hardworking and loyal colleagues you could possibly wish for.”

‘Education transforms futures’

Moira Marder, chief executive of the Ted Wragg trust, said she was “overwhelmed but delighted to receive this honour”.

Elizabeth Kenny

“I continue to believe fiercely in the role education has to play in transforming young people’s futures, no matter what their background.”

Other school leaders were also recognised.

Elizabeth Kenny, who leads the English hub at Whiston Worrygoose Junior and Infant Primary School, Rotherham, will receive the MBE. She said it was an “honour”.

“Being able to contribute to ensuring all children, particularly those from areas of disadvantage, receive a high quality education in their early years, continues to inspire the work of myself and my colleagues.”

Heads and support staff recognised

Nevita Pandya, head of Townley Grammar School in Bexleyheath, south east London, will receive the MBE.

Nevita Pandya

She said: “Throughout my career I have been fortunate to work with some truly committed people, all sharing an unswerving determination to make a positive difference.

“This MBE stands as a tribute to these incredible colleagues and the inspiring young minds we serve at Townley Grammar School.”

Also among the heads and principals recognised is James Handscombe, who founded Harris Westminster Sixth Form, and will receive the OBE.

“Setting up Harris Westminster and being its founding principal has been a massive privilege and being part of the community of scholars has been a great joy,” he said.

“I’m delighted that our success has been recognised and honoured to receive the accolade for my part in it.”

Andrew Hodkinson, headteacher at West Oaks School in Leeds, will receive the MBE for services to children and young people with SEND.

The Wakefield Express reported Hodkinson has set up an external counselling service as well as “worry boxes” and “feeling safe areas” around the school and in classrooms.

Lucas Maxwell

School support staff and governors have also been recognised, including Lucas Maxwell, the librarian at Glenthorne High School, Surrey. He will receive the British Empire Medal (BEM).

He said he was “extremely grateful”.

“Working for the Willow Trust, a small academy in south London, the school library is vital for not only academic achievement but student wellbeing. I’m very excited that this medal highlights the important work school libraries do across the country.”

You can download our handy PDF list of the winners linked to England’s schools here. If you think we’ve missed someone out, email news@schoolsweek.co.uk.

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