• the team

The Team

Executive team led by CEO Nicky Edmondson:

Nicky Edmondson, Principal of St. John's

Nicky Edmondson - Chief Executive Officer

Following three successful years as Principal of St John's Marlborough Nicky was appointed CEO of Excalibur Academies Trust in September 2018. With over 18 years of senior leadership experience across five comprehensive schools in different contexts Nicky is a talented leader with a track record of success. As a practising teacher of English she was consistently judged outstanding by Ofsted. An experienced coach and mentor she has worked with Bath Spa University on their PGCE programme. Nicky has significantly raised achievement in every school she has led; at St John’s she raised both attainment and progress in addition to significantly reducing the gap in achievement for disadvantaged students. Nicky has extensive experience of successfully leading change, developing and delivering strategy at local and national level, and inspiring and developing future leaders. As CEO Nicky provides challenge and support to headteachers, leadership coaching and a wide range of professional development for senior and middle leaders. Her commitment to collaborative working is evidenced by the lead role she taken in a wide range of educational organisations.

Ms Catriona Mangham

Catriona Mangham - Head of Academy Improvement

Catriona has been a Principal for over eight years and has turned a failing inner city school into a high achieving oversubscribed organisation. She is also an Associate Head teacher for PiXL supporting four other schools in raising achievement, a mentor Head teacher for Ofsted and has recently been asked by the DfE to join their Women into Leadership programme as a mentor. A coach on leadership for the ASPIRE foundation and a National Leader of Education. Catriona has also worked with HTI on key projects, lectures at Bristol University and has been a keynote speaker for many organisations on leadership and moral purpose. Her specialism is leadership in challenging circumstances and she supports new and experienced headteachers in this role and works with senior leaders on leadership particularly around accountability, monitoring and evaluation.

Karen Davis - Chief Finance Officer

Karen has a commercial background in consultancy, programme management and IT. She moved into the education sector in 2006; was a Lead Practitioner with the SSAT becomimg Chief Financial Officer in 2014. Karen focuses on governance, development projects and has an impressive track record in securing grants.

Richard Smith

Richard Smith - Director of Teaching and Learning (Secondary)

Richard joined the teaching profession in 2000, prior to which he was a postgraduate at King's College, London, and then worked in multinational corporate banking in the City. In his time at St. John's he was National Lead for numerous curriculum projects including the RSA's "Opening Minds"; Oxfam's Global Citizenship Project; DflD's Global Curriculum Project and QCA's national projects Curriculum Redesign. Judged an outstanding practitioner in English by Ofsted on three separate inspections he was part of the DfE's prestigious first cohort for the Fast Track Teaching Programme. A senior leader since 2007, Richard holds NPQH, is a trained coach and has been working for Excalibur since its inception. As Director of Secondary Education / Director of Teaching & Learning he is responsible for providing support, challenge and guidance to academies within Excalibur driving up standards and ensure that the quality of Teaching & Learning is Outstanding.

Laura Reid - Director of Excalibur Teaching School Alliance

With over 13 years experience in Wiltshire schools as an English teacher Laura has led many areas of the secondary English curriculum and been Head of Faculty. She has also been a senior leader responsible for advising on teaching and learning and a Senior Secondary Improvement Partner working with other schools on improvement. Laura has been awarded the NPQSL qualification and focused on teaching and learning, and leading change. As Director of Excalibur Teaching School Alliance, Laura is responsible for leading and developing the strategy for the Teaching School, offering provision across the Alliance in Initial Teacher Training, School to School Support and Continued Professional Development. Outside of school, Laura has worked for AQA as an examiner for A Level English Language

Sarah Cardy - Head of AEN and Inclusion

Sarah has over 20 years teaching experience and 13 years’ experience as SENDCo in both primary and secondary schools and is currently SENDCo for St John’s, Marlborough. In 2014, she planned and led the first Excalibur Academies Trust SpLD Awareness Day, collaborating with local dyslexia and specific learning difficulty specialists. Sarah has been judged as an outstanding practitioner in both primary and secondary inspections and has her NPQH.

Christopher Field - Head of ICT strategy and impact

Graduating from St Andrews in Computer Science Christopher worked in the financial services sector before qualifying as a teacher in 2011. He has taught computer science and business studies at St John’s Marlborough across all key stages and has been consistently graded an Outstanding practitioner. Christopher was appointed as the coordinator of E-Safety in 2012, promoted to Key Stage Leader in 2015 and successfully completed the Middle Leadership Programme. Passionate about technology he is constantly exploring how it can be used to enhance teaching and learning. As Head of ICT strategy and impact he is responsible for providing support to stakeholders, identifying efficiencies and promoting a consistent, effective ICT strategy.

Val Wright - Head of Finance and Compliance

Val graduated in Civil Engineering and worked for Mott MacDonald for 10 years as a Highway Design Engineer. Following a career break, she retrained as an accountant gaining membership of the Association of Accounting Technicians whilst working for an accountancy practice as VAT Service Manager. Val joined St Johns Marlborough in 2010 as Finance Manager and completed the CSBM course through the National College. As Head of Finance and Compliance she is responsible for the financial reporting of all the academies within Excalibur Academies Trust.

Kim Jones - HR Director

Kim has a financial services background, having spent 10 years working as an Executive Assistant to the Chairman of a large insurance company. In her next role, she spent 11 years working for two small businesses with responsibility for the business accounts, staff, and health and safety. She moved to the education section in 2010 having spent nine years as a governor for one of Excalibur’s primary schools. A qualified School Business Manager and Professional Member of the CIPD, Kim is responsible for human resource management and strategy across the Trust.