Leaving CfEY


4th January 2023

After seven fantastic years @TheCfEY, I’m leaving with mixed emotions. I’m excited about the future and my plans to focus more on helping to improve SEND practice and policy, but at the same time I’m sad to leave. I’ll look back on my time at CfEY with joy and pride. A huge thank you to @LoicMnzs and @joehallg for the opportunities and support along the way.

Here are my top ten things I’ve enjoyed:

  1. The team. I’ve worked with almost everyone who’s ever been involved in LKMco/CfEY and every single one has been a delight to work with. There is definitely a really special feeling at CfEY of supportiveness and alignment of important values. Thanks all!
  2. Helping individuals develop. Line managing @KateBV, @Barristotle and @billyhubt has been a real joy. Three brilliant individuals who have taught me more than I’ve taught them
  3. Working on SEND-related research projects. Right back to Joining the Dots and SEND and Poverty and more recently on consultative type work with LAs and schools, this has been an
    area I’ve found fascinating and inspiring and has given me the push to develop further to support young people with SEND
  4. Connecting with inspiring and good people across the education and youth worlds. I’ve met some incredible folk who have helped shape my thinking as well as making marginalised young people’s lives (measurably) better
  5. Our work that explored lower-income pupils outcomes, whether through the lens of intersectionality, progress in secondary schools or primary-secondary transitions, there are important messages here about the deep-seated impact of poverty, where solutions must go beyond schools
  6. CfEY’s book. I’m really proud of my chapter on SEND in Young People in the Margins, not because I think it’s particularly brilliant, but because of the way some people I hugely respect have received that chapter and the book as a whole
  7. Spending 6 years working for someone who’s as psyched for climbing than me. @LoicMnzs and I snuck in some good routes on away days that coincidentally happened to be close to climbing areas
  8. Fieldwork in schools. Our research has taken me into some brilliant schools where young people are set up with a range of opportunities for the future. I’ve seen innovative practice, met inspiring young people, been impressed with support staff, teachers, leaders. There is more to celebrate than there is to bemoan
  9. Fieldwork with charities and youth organisations. Before working at CfEY I knew much less about this work. I’ve been enlightened, especially by research into mentoring, opportunity
    areas, and careers
  10. Sharing ideas on education and youth policy with a range of experts, parliamentarians, civil servants and practitioners. I’m proud of some of the influence CfEY has had over the years, and some of the ideas we’ve been able to share

Thank you CfEY and everyone along the way – looking forward now to 2023 and what the future