Phil Redford

Director of Teaching School

Phil has taught in a variety of subjects and has held responsibilities as head of year, head of department, head of faculty and as an SLT member. He has worked in schools where key changes have been implemented in order to completely change the culture across the landscape, having responsibility for reforming performance management, teaching and learning and special educational needs provision. He has been responsible for planning and delivering CPD across the alliance, monitoring and evaluating NQT provision and has worked as an SLE with middle leadership teams across several schools, seeking to develop good practice.  He has extensive experience in working with many different schools in Cheshire East and beyond and has seen a variety of approaches different schools have taken to the changing landscape learners face.

Lorraine Mellish

SCITT Director & MFL Subject Expert

Lorraine is the person directly responsible for the delivery and quality assurance of all aspects of the initial teacher training programme. This includes recruitment of course personnel and trainees, organisation, administration, teaching programmes, placements and assessments. She works closely with Manchester Metropolitan University and other SCITT providers. Lorraine has been teaching MFL for 31 years and has been involved in initial teacher training for 19 years, during which time she has worked as a Partnership Quality Officer for Edge Hill University and a QA Lead for MMU and the Cheshire East SCITT. Lorraine is also the MFL Subject Specialist Lead.

Sarah Longshaw

SCITT Science Subject Expert

Sarah has been teaching for over 20 years during which time she has been curriculum leader.  Sarah is a specialist leader of education and has run the Cheshire & Stockport Science Learning Partnership for the last three years.  Sarah is an active member of the Association for Science Education; she is on the 11-19 committee, chairs the North West committee and is passionate about supporting teachers at all stage of their careers.

Sarah Robson

SCITT English Subject Expert

Sarah is Deputy Curriculum Team Leader at Congleton High School, and teaches from KS3 to KS5. She has worked as both a Subject Mentor and Professional Mentor. Subject Days across the year are designed to complement the topics covered on centre based training days, providing a specific English focus. Subject specific topics include: the teaching of grammar, approaches to Shakespeare and a study of the new GCSE and A level specifications.

Helen Carruthers

SCITT Geography Subject Expert

Helen has been teaching Secondary Geography for 20 years, 15 of which were as Curriculum Leader. She has also been a Training School Lead for the North West. She has mentored and trained mentors as part of the Cheshire East SCITT. Her passion for fieldwork and its advantages have become an integral part of her specialist subject days. 

James Barrett

SCITT Maths Subject Expert

James is the Operational Lead of Maths at Holmes Chapel and teaches from KS3 up to A-level and Core Maths at KS5. During subject days, the focus is on how to approach a range of educational issues from the perspective of a subject specialist. Subject Days complement the topics covered on the Centre-based training days, but with a particular focus on how to approach this specifically in Maths. Sessions will, for example, look at approaches to develop student’s problem solving skills or how to make challenging topics accessible for students.  As Subject Lead he also provides additional support and monitoring while trainees are on placement.  

Toni Brookshaw

SCITT History Subject Expert

Toni has been teaching for fifteen years and has been involved in ITT for ten.  She has worked with a range of ITT providers, including most recently the Cheshire East SCITT.  She has led the History department at Alsager High School, as well as having the role of Induction Mentor for NQTs.  She is also Chair of Governors at a local primary school, giving an insight into the planning and delivery of the KS2 History curriculum.  Subject days across the year will complement the centre based timetable, focusing on History specific application.  For example, sessions will cover the delivery of source skills and evaluating interpretations as well as taking into account the wider considerations of designing a History Curriculum.

Lesley Brown

SCITT Social Sciences Subject Expert

Lesley is Curriculum Leader for Social Sciences at Malbank School, Nantwich.  She has been a secondary school teacher and curriculum leader of the social sciences for over 30 years and delivers her subjects at KS4 and KS5.   Lesley has also been a subject mentor to trainee teachers over the course of her career. Having spent over 20 years as a senior examiner for Psychology, understanding assessment will form part of the subject day content.  Key topics across the breadth of subjects within the social sciences will also be covered to enable trainees to become more versatile.

Grace Barber

SCITT Music Subject Expert

Grace is Curriculum Leader for Music at Sandbach School and has been teaching for 14 years. She has been involved in ITT for 12 years with trainees on a number of different pathways including both Secondary Music and Secondary Music with Specialist Instrumental Teaching. She teaches KS3, 4 and 5 Music and Music Technology and directs the Cheshire Specialist A Level Music Course in conjunction with The Love Music Trust and The Royal Northern College of Music.  She is a member of The Love Music Trust’s steering group which ensures there is balanced and quality music provision across Cheshire East in both primary and secondary school settings. Subject days across the year will focus on how to design an engaging music curriculum, adapting teaching and learning within different musical environments and setting up extra-curricular groups within a school.

Mark Bennett

SCITT PE Subject Expert

Marc is a physical education teacher at Alsager school has been teaching for 12 years, from KS3 up to KS5. He has held a number of positions within the department, including head of boys PE and deputy curriculum leader. Marc has been involved with ITT for 10 years and worked with a variety of providers.  


Subject Days across the year are designed to complement the topics covered on centre based training days, providing a specific Physical Education focus. Subject specific topics include: designing and delivering and engaging curriculum (and extra curriculum programme) to cover a breadth of practical activities within the subject, as well as the study of GCSE, A-Level and vocational specifications.

Beth Williams

SCITT Drama Subject Expert

Bethan is drama lead at Eaton Bank Academy. She has been teaching for 21 years, during which time she has held responsibilities as Head of department, Head of Year, Head of Sixth Form and Creative Coach. She has also led a number of INSET sessions for teaching staff and trainee teachers. Subject days across the year will include Curriculum planning, delivery and assessment, practitioner and devising workshops and sessions on approaching a text for performance and theory. 

Lilian McKechnie

SCITT Administrator

Lilian is responsible for managing the administration of the course. She is often the first person to contact with any queries concerning the course, your application, interviews, pre-course information and financial matters. She also provides an experienced listening ear, plus help and advice with day-to-day challenges.

Annabel Bush

SCITT Administrator

Annabel is responsible for managing the administration of the NQT Appropriate Body induction packages.  She is also responsible for managing the administration of the course in conjunction with Lilian.  In addition to this she runs the School Experience Programme at HCCS. 


Cheshire East SCITT

Holmes Chapel Comprehensive School

Holmes Chapel



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