Institute of Education



Find out more about the speakers for our 2019 IOE Debates series


The IOE Debates are chaired by UCL Institute of Education (IOE) Director Professor Becky Francis 

Becky Francis

Professor Becky Francis joined the IOE from King's College London, where she was Professor of Education and Social Justice. Her previous roles include Director of Education at the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA).

Becky has combined academic research and policy work in education throughout her career. She regularly serves as a consultant to the UK government and international agencies on education policy matters, and previously served as Standing Advisor to the UK Parliamentary committee responsible for scrutinising government policy on education. She is a frequent media commentator on education issues.


What if... education policy was shaped by a commitment to social justice?
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Louise Archer, Karl Mannheim Professor of Sociology of Education, IOE
Louise is co-chair (with Professor Jessica Ringrose) of the IOE’s Centre for Sociology of Education and Equity (CSEE). Her research focuses on educational identities and inequalities, particularly in relation to gender, ethnicity and social class. She has directed numerous research studies, and is currently the Principal Investigator (PI) of the 10-year, ESRC-funded ASPIRES/ ASPIRES2 study (tracking young people’s science and career aspirations, age 10-19) and the UK PI of the four-year Wellcome Trust/US National Science Foundation-funded Youth Equity + STEM project.
IOE Public Debates - Dan Morrow
Dan Morrow, CEO, Woodland Academy Trust
Dan has a proven track record in school improvement and strategic leadership and systems leadership are his passion. His own leadership journey has seen him lead at a senior level in an all through, a secondary and, prior to his appointment to the Trust, a primary school. His main learning has been that leadership vision, values and behaviours are more crucial than context in securing rapid and sustained progress.  By ensuring high expectations, underpinned by accountability structures built on credibility and integrity, Dan has led schools to be outstanding in every category and turned schools from special measures to good in all categories within 12 months. Leading on accountability means ensuring clear goals and targets are set, monitored and underperformance is quickly challenged and addressed, through support and quality assurance.
IOE Public Debates - Iesha Small

Iesha Small, Speaker and Head of Strategy, Youth Hostels Association (England & Wales)
Iesha has particular interests in creating a fairer society and mental health. She spent three years of influencing practice and policy at the Centre for Education and Youth. Previously she was an assistant headteacher and maths teacher. Iesha writes about education and society for The Guardian and has been a columnist for Schools Week. She has also been seconded to the DfE and has served as a school governor. Iesha has spoken in an expert capacity for organisations including Chartered College of Teaching, The Church of England and Channel 5 news. She has contributed to books covering education, mental health, and gender. She is also the author of The Unexpected Leader.

IOE Public Debates - Jason Arday
Dr Jason Arday, Assistant Professor in Sociology, Durham University
Jason is a Visiting Research Fellow at The Ohio State University in the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, a Research Associate at Nelson Mandela University in the Centre for Critical Studies in Higher Education Transformation and a Trustee of the Runnymede Trust - the UK’s leading race equality think-tank. Jason sits on the Centre for Labour and Social Studies (CLASS) National Advisory Panel and is a School Governor at Shaftesbury Park Primary School in London. He was formerly an Elected Steering Committee Member of Comprehensive Future. Jason’s research focuses on Race, Education and Social Justice. His publications include Considering Racialized Contexts in Education: Using Reflective Practice and Peer-Mentoring to support Black and Ethnic Minority educators (Routledge), Being Young, Black and Male: Challenging the dominant discourse (Palgrave) and Exploring Cool Britannia and Multi-Ethnic Britain: Uncorking the Champagne Supernova (Routledge). Jason was also a co-editor of The Runnymede School Report: Race Education and Inequality in Contemporary Britain.
What if… the world really did revolve around teenagers?
Iroise Dumontheil
Iroise Dumontheil, Reader in Cognitive Neuroscience, Birkbeck 
Dr Iroise Dumontheil is a member of the Centre for Educational Neuroscience (UCL and Birkbeck) and the Centre for Brain and Cognitive Development (Birkbeck). Her research focuses on the typical development of social cognition and cognitive control during adolescence and their functioning in adulthood. Her studies combine a variety of methods to study brain and cognitive development including functional and structural neuroimaging, behavioural assessments, and genetics, as well as academic performance measures. She is interested in the impact of cognitive training, from computerised games to mindfulness meditation practice, on adolescent cognition, as well as the potential implications of these various research strands for education. In 2015 she received the Spearman Medal, an early-career British Psychological Society award, and in 2017 the Elizabeth Warrington Prize from the British Neuropsychological Society.

Mark Lehain
Mark Lehain, Director, Parents and Teachers for Excellence 
Mark Lehain trained as maths teacher in 2002 after a brief period working in the City, and then taught at a state school in Bedford. Having been Head of Department, and then Assistant Head at Wootton Upper School, in 2010 he left to lead the campaign to open Bedford Free School (BFS), one of the country’s first free schools. BFS opened in 2012, and he was Principal there until summer 2017. Mark is currently the Director of Parents and Teachers for Excellence, a group campaigning for higher standards in schools. When not advocating for educational reform, he can be found drinking copious quantities of coffee, running and pretending that he knows how to manage his four young daughters.

Mike Shooter
Mike Shooter, Psychiatrist
Mike has worked with the children, young people and families of Cardiff and the Valleys of South Wales for over 30 years. He was the first child psychiatrist to be elected as President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and has been President, Chair or Trustee of many national organisations. He is an Honorary Fellow of six Royal Colleges. He has advised governments around the world on the provision of services and has spoken extensively on children's issues in the media and from the public platform. He has written and co-edited many articles, books and chapters. His latest book, Growing Pains, is a distillation of his work. Mike has a recurrent depressive illness of his own, and the Growing Pains of the book are his own pains as well as those of his clients! He still lives in the heart of his clinical patch, surrounded by his wife, children, grandchildren and a host of animals.
Bettina Hohnen
Bettina Hohnen, Clinical Psychologist 
Bettina is passionate about supporting the well-being of young people by strengthening relationships. She is a trained Clinical Psychologist and has worked individually with families for many years. Her combined clinical and academic background means she can translate complex research in the area of mental health and neuroscience to inform parents and teachers. She regularly gives talks and runs workshops with the aim of aligning parents and teachers with the developmental needs of young people. Bettina has recently published a book with two colleagues called The Incredible Teenage Brain: Everything You Need to Know to Unlock a Teen’s Potential, which is a book for adults supporting teenagers. It takes the cutting edge brain research and considers what it means in a day to day context for parents, teachers and professionals supporting young people.


What if… we wanted more effective school improvement?
Leora Cruddas
Leora Cruddas, CEO, Confederation of School Trusts (CST)
Leora Cruddas is the CEO of the Confederation of School Trusts – the national organisation and sector body for school trusts in England.  She has advised successive governments and sits on several Department for Education advisory bodies. She is Vice-Chair of the Head Teacher Standards Review Group. Prior to establishing CST, Leora was Director of Policy and Public Relations for the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL). Just before leaving ASCL, she established the Commission for Ethical Leadership, on which she served as a commissioner. She now sits on the Ethics Committee. She believes education is for the common good. Leora also has six years’ experience as a Director of Education in two London Local Authorities, and extensive experience at senior executive level of working with schools and trusts to improve the effectiveness and quality of education. 
Tim Brighouse
Tim Brighouse, Educator
Tim Brighouse retired from the post of London Commissioner for Schools in 2007 after five years of leading the London Challenge. Before that he spent 10 years as Chief Education Officer in Birmingham and 10 years as CEO in Oxfordshire, separated by four years as Professor of Education at Keele University. Earlier he worked in a number of authorities and schools.  Since 2007 he has continued speaking and writing, mainly about school improvement. 
Lucy Heller
Lucy Heller, Chief Executive, Ark 
Lucy joined Ark in 2004 from TSL Education, a subsidiary of News International, where she was joint Managing Director. Her previous roles include General Manager of The Observer and Executive Chairman at Verso, a trade and academic publisher. She has worked for many years with a number of charitable and voluntary organisations including the Marshall Commission, Community Links and the Bush Theatre.
IOE Public Debates - Jennese Alozie
Jennese Alozie, Director of Effectiveness and Performance, STEP Academy Trust
Before joining STEP Academy Trust, Jennese was a Deputy Headteacher within secondary schools and as a Standards and Excellence Commissioner for a local authority, working with secondary and primary school clusters. She is also a practising Ofsted Inspector, leading on secondary and primary inspections. Her passion for education, past and current experiences, means that she can bring a different perspective to every dynamic.