CfEY leadership update


1st March 2024

After a busy and exciting few years of leading The Centre for Education and Youth, CEO Joe Hallgarten has decided to step down from the role to pursue new ventures. 

Since joining CfEY, Joe has contributed in many ways to our mission to create connections, insights and actions that improve young people’s childhoods, transitions to adulthood and life chances.

His work on the development of a new project-based primary assessment highlighted CfEY’s distinctive role as a ‘think and action-tank’. The creation of the Primary Extended Project Award exemplified our aim to turn research into action, by codesigning and trialling innovations that can have a direct positive impact on young people and practitioners.

Joe has supported a project exploring and mapping Area Based Education Partnerships across the country. This work highlighted CfEY’s interest in place-based change, enabled by policymakers and empowering young people and practitioners by positioning them at the centre of the decisions that affect them.

He also contributed to a practice review of GCSE resits for the Education Endowment Foundation. This work supported CfEY’s aim to shape debate, inform policy and change practice by influencing the government’s decision to award additional funding to the EEF to trial new interventions for post-16 learners.

Joe has overseen the expansion of CfEY’s work on youth participation, including the initiation of our Young Experts Citizens programme that supports marginalised young people to affect local policy change. Building on this work, the recent creation of our ‘Programmes and Participation’ strand, headed up by Abi Angus, demonstrates CfEY’s commitment to amplifying the views and voices of young people.

Joe said: “I have really enjoyed my years at CfEY.  I’m proud of the ways in which we have evolved the organisation, the projects we have initiated, the reports we have written, the new relationships we have built, and the impact we have had. Above all, I have learnt so much from working with our brilliant staff team and partners. 

“From April, I’m aiming to combine a part-time return to teaching with writing a book (on education and civil society) and some internationally-focused education work, all building on the knowledge I have gained at CfEY.  I leave the organisation with a strong board and senior leadership team in place, new projects emerging, and exciting plans to diversify our work.”

Patrick Connolly, Chair of the Board at CfEY, added: “The CfEY board and team would like to thank Joe for his time leading the organisation and wish him the very best for the future. With strong interim leadership already in place and increased capacity across the growing team, CfEY remains focused on delivering high-quality work for the education and youth sectors, as well as exploring exciting new opportunities on the horizon.”

While CfEY is sad to be saying goodbye, we will be keeping in touch and wish Joe the very best of luck for his future journey. Our team of committed Non-Executive Directors, alongside Terry Boyce, Director of Partnerships, and Róisín Killick, Director of Research and Operations, are confident in managing the next steps in the development of our organisation, as we evolve to meet the needs of the sector and continue to deliver work to our usual high standards.

If you would like to hear more about CfEY’s work, share ideas, or explore opportunities to collaborate, we would be delighted to hear from you! Get in touch at [email protected] or contact one of the team directly via their details on our website.