Meet Blackfriars Teaching School Alliance Staff

Berni Pearce

Teaching School Director

Berni's career in education began in 1996 as a Newly Qualified Teacher of English in a local secondary school. Soon after, she became Second in English and then promoted to Head of English. Berni very much enjoyed the challenge of being a middle leader and working closely with her team to deliver the best possible outcomes for pupils. After 4 years as Head of English and a long run of successful Key Stage 4 results in the department, she became an Advanced Skills Teacher. During the 6 years as an AST, she worked with over 25 schools and found supporting other colleagues in their setting very rewarding. In 2010, she was appointed as an Assistant Headteacher and a Specialist Leader of Education in 2012. In September 2015, Berni became Director of Teaching School and a member of the Shaw Education Trust School Improvement team. Her career to date has been varied and extremely enjoyable, busy and so worthwhile. She says "every day is a privilege to work alongside so many committed professionals and to teach pupils who use their education to go on to achieve and succeed as adults".

Alison Parr

Blackfriars Headteacher

Alison Parr; Principal of Blackfriars Academy, an outstanding school for 23 years. Alison maintained this position when Ofsted visited in September 2017. The Academy’s report .stated ‘ You and leaders within the school and trust are having a striking impact on the lives of the pupils who attend both school sites. Leaders have considerable drive and passion. Pupils’ needs are at the heart of decision-making. Outcomes at every key stage are consistently strong.’
Before joining Blackfriars, Alison led the Keele University PGCE and developed an ITT Partnership with 70+ schools across five Local Authorities. She helped to develop the Post Graduate Diploma in International Education ( PGDiE) and led continuing professional development sessions for staff at the Indus school in Bangalore and developed Masters level provision with ITARI, Bangalore, India. In Thailand, based at Harrow International School, Bangkok, she led CPD sessions for teaching colleagues from across the Far East undertaking a Diploma in International Education. Most recently, Alison has collaborated with Staffordshire University on a British Council project working in China with 30 school colleagues from a range of primary, secondary schools and FE settings.
Alison also undertakes school to school work supporting mainstream schools to develop their SEND provision in the UK.

Jill Rawlinson

Professional Tutor

Jill has a PGCE and degree in History and Religious Studies, which are the main subjects she has taught for many years, both in the UK and Colombia. She continues to develop professionally through postgraduate studies and on an Erasmus project creating resources to promote an inclusive pedagogy with trainee teachers. Her passion is teaching humanities creatively to pupils of all abilities through a wide range of multi sensory learning. She initially taught in mainstream secondary schools before joining the Blackfriars team. She worked for the Staffordshire Physical Disability Support Service gaining an expertise in supporting pupils with a wide range of additional needs. Jill also works with trainee teachers both through Keele University (KNSTE) and with our own teaching school (Blackfriars TSA) and Derby University, encouraging new entrants to the profession to develop a dynamic pupil centred approach in their teaching. She is also responsible for overseeing our local Newly Qualified Teachers.

Clare Ellams

Clare Ellams

Office Services Manager

Clare came into the education sector in 2020, having spent many years running her own business. Her wide ranging business skills are now employed in the role of Office Services Manager, where she believes passionately about the delivery of outstanding customer service. She works closely with all members of the Teaching School team to ensure that first class support and training is delivered to all schools.

As the first point of contact for most people, Clare is able to provide you with all the information you need about the courses and services that Blackfriars Teaching School Alliance offers. If you have any questions or require further information then Clare is the person you need.

Contact Us HERE

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