Small but experienced

Our small, but strong team bring experience from right across the education system.

About Gillian Hamilton

Gillian Hamilton was appointed as Strategic Director when the roles and functions of the Scottish College for Educational Leadership (SCEL) transferred to Education Scotland on 01 April 2018. Gillian has responsibility for Professional Learning and Leadership, as well as for Organisational Development within Education Scotland. Prior to the transfer, Gillian was the first Chief Executive of SCEL at its inception in 2014.

Gillian has worked in Scottish education for 28 years and has held posts as a Primary Teacher, Senior Teacher, Depute Head Teacher and Head Teacher in schools in Glasgow, North and East Ayrshire.

Gillian was Head of Educational Services at GTC Scotland for three years before becoming Chief Executive where she led the revision of the Professional Standards and the pilot programmes of Professional Update, which was rolled out nationally in August 2014.

She has been a member of a number of national educational groups with a focus on professional learning and leadership. She is currently a member of the Strategic Board for Teacher Education and the Head Teacher Recruitment working group.

About Lesley Whelan

From 1 April 2018, when SCEL and its programmes transferred to Education Scotland, Lesley was appointed as Director of SCEL Programmes  with responsibility for SCEL’s suite of programmes and the Framework for Educational Leadership.

Prior to that Lesley was SCEL’s Depute Chief executive and Director of Programmes.

Lesley took up post as SCEL’s Depute Chief Executive and Director of Programmes in February 2015. Before joining SCEL, Lesley worked in the College sector for over 20 years in three different colleges and with the College Development Network (formerly SFEU) where she led the organisation’s work on Governance and Leadership and Management Development. Before joining the college sector Lesley worked with the John Lewis Partnership.

Lesley’s time at the College Development Network was focused on developing leadership capacity and capability in the college sector. This included the development of a Masters in Management for Tertiary Education with the University of Stirling. Lesley led the Leading and Learning development programme aimed at principals and senior college leaders, introduced the first development programme for college board members, developed and delivered programmes for emerging leaders with a focus on creativity in education, had responsibility for the Emporium of Dangerous Ideas and supported a number of networks across the college sector including the Marketing Network and Marketing Awards, the HR and OD Network and was the Secretary to Board of Management Network. Lesley also project managed the work to develop a Code of Good Governance for Scotland’s Colleges.

Since joining SCEL, Lesley has worked with the team on the design, development and implementation of the new national Into Headship qualification, the development and launch of the online Framework for Educational Leadership and the organisation’s new website. A next focus will be the creation of a suite of programmes to support developments in educational leadership at all levels.

About Louise Henderson

Louise joined SCEL as Digital Manager in February 2016. She has responsibility for SCEL’s growing range of digital presence including our recently launched website, our Framework for Educational Leadership, and the on-line Moodle environment for the Into Headship programme.

She also leads our work on social media, supporting the SCEL team to share our work, thinking, and professional learning opportunities and also ensuring maximum engagement with the education community across Scotland.

Louise brings ten years’ experience of working in the digital industry, and has developed her skills and knowledge from previous roles in the third sector and the music industry. She studied music at University, and has a love of all things digital, probably starting with the gift of a modem for her 10th birthday! This steered her towards a digital communications role in a record company. From there, her career has covered both the technical and community aspect of digital and social media, and she enjoys the challenges that the ever-changing digital landscape brings.

Louise has a passion for photography and graphic design. In her spare time she enjoys cycling, softball and snowboarding.

About Lorna Hume

Lorna joined the SCEL team in November 2015 and is now our full time Events Assistant. On joining the team, Lorna was  originally responsible for a wide range of administrative tasks but played an increasingly important role in the organisation, planning and successful execution of our growing number of events and professional learning opportunities. She is now responsible for organising and promoting all SCEL events and conferences.

Lorna brings valuable experience to the team at SCEL from previous employment within Social Work Department, the National Health Service and the Scottish Children’s Reporter’s Administration. Lorna also spent five years working in schools as Classroom Assistant and Clerical Assistant. She gained invaluable experience whilst in school, organising all the school outings and events. She was also a Children’s Panel member for 10 years.

About Alison Weatherston

Alison Weatherston joined SCEL in July 2018, as Lead Specialist with responsibility for school leadership, including the programmes for Into Headship, In Headship and Towards Headship.

Alison has had a career of over 30 years in education with a background in primary teaching, working in Glasgow, East Renfrewshire and South Lanarkshire. After 12 years as a depute headteacher she became headteacher of Heathery Knowe Primary School in 2011.

In 2016, Alison was seconded to the strategic role of Lead Officer for School Leadership in South Lanarkshire Council, supporting and developing the professional learning of school leaders at all levels. She has a particular commitment to using coaching as a tool for professional growth and promoted its development throughout South Lanarkshire’s professional learning activities, developing a network of experienced coaches. Through her role, Alison also developed an interest in the recruitment and retention of teachers.

In a changing educational landscape, her personal energy and drive come from motivating, encouraging and supporting school leaders to continue to make a positive difference to young people and as lead specialist, looks forward to developing programmes that reflect the evolving roles of school leaders.

About Gordon Bone

Gordon joined SCEL on a two-year secondment in September 2018, as lead specialist for the Excellence in Headship programme.

In his 30-year career, Gordon has been a headteacher for 13 years. He has worked in a range of schools in different local authorities such as East Dunbartonshire, West Dunbartonshire, East Renfrewshire and South Ayrshire, where he has been headteacher of Prestwick Academy since June 2008.

Gordon has worked nationally and locally on developments such as Higher Still, Curriculum for Excellence and Developing the Young Workforce. He also worked for the GTCS on programmes such as the Flexible Route to Headship and more recently served on panels for their Professional Learning Award.

Gordon has experience of working nationally with secondary headteacher colleagues and looks forward to working with all headteachers through the Excellence in Headship programme to ensure opportunities for professional learning are of the highest quality to meet the needs of headteachers at a time of change in the system.

About David Burgess

David Burgess joined SCEL in August 2018 to take up the post of Lead Specialist with responsibility for middle leadership.

David has had a 20-year career in education, starting as a history teacher in Fife local authority. David has had a number of leadership roles which include: assistant principal teacher of guidance, principal teacher of pupil support, principal teacher of history, principal teacher of curriculum social subjects before being appointed depute headteacher of Inverkeithing High School and then depute headteacher of Dunfermline High School.

In 2014, David was seconded to the post of professional learning and leadership development officer for Fife local authority. Part of his role involved developing, writing and delivering leadership courses for staff at all levels within the authority. David worked closely with Edinburgh University and was involved in the development and delivery of a masters level course for middle leaders. He achieved a diploma in coaching and used this to support the professional learning of all staff.

David is excited about supporting the professional learning development of middle leaders and the positive impact that this can have on improving outcomes for all young people.

About Jacqueline Morley

Jacqueline Morley is seconded to SCEL as a lead specialist for professional learning from her substantive post within GTC Scotland as senior education officer for professional learning and leadership.

Within GTC Scotland Jacqueline’s key areas of work focused on leadership and support for career long professional learning, in particular the GTCS Professional Learning Awards. Her work included the structures and support systems which enable education professionals to engage in meaningful professional learning and to reflect on the impact of this on their knowledge, skills and abilities.

Prior to joining the GTC Scotland, Jacqueline was continuing professional development manager for Scottish Borders Council for over ten years where she worked extensively on professional learning and leadership support provision across the council with a particular emphasis on the needs of teachers and school leaders. She built a strong coaching and mentoring culture with most professional learning programmes supported by coaching or action learning set work.

Jacqueline began her career as a primary school teacher in London before moving to teach overseas for a number of years. She has worked in adult learning and teacher education for over 30 years and was vice principal of a large private language school in Scotland before moving to take up post in Scottish Borders.

She is passionate about the importance of support provisions for education professionals that enable children, young people and adult learners achieve the best possible outcomes. She has worked in partnership with SCEL and GTC Scotland for many years serving on various professional panels and contributing to the creation of the GTC Professional Standards.

About Lise McCaffery

Lise McCaffery joined SCEL as a lead specialist for professional learning in January 2019.

Having completed her Masters in education with a specialism in mathematics pedagogies, she was regional director of primary engineer delivering STEM professional learning throughout Scotland. She led their professional recognition and Master’s-level programmes, partnering with the University of Strathclyde, to build enquiry-based approaches to improving STEM teaching and learning. She was recognised with an Excellence Award in Professional Recognition by GTCS in September 2017.

Lise was the lead practitioner of a family learning centre for five years and went on to become a senior curriculum manager within Explore Learning, a network of learning centres in the UK and US. She was responsible for professional learning of staff across the UK and recruited and lead a team of practitioner experts who co-designed and co-delivered that learning.

Her passion in education stems from her parents, who established the first integrated schools in Northern Ireland (Hazelwood nursery, primary and secondary schools) in the 1980s, educating Catholics and Protestants together during the Troubles.

About Annette Beaton

Annette Beaton joined SCEL in May 2018 to take up the post of Lead Specialist with responsibility for system leadership which includes the Leading Systems Change programme and the second system leadership programme to be introduced, Evolving Systems Thinking. Prior to working with SCEL, Annette was appointed to the post of Headteacher of Crieff Primary School in 2012 as her second headship, the first being the Royal School of Dunkeld. Annette trained as a primary teacher, as a teacher of the deaf and held leadership posts in two local authorities prior to becoming headteacher.

In recent years Annette’s work has had a particular focus on Social Justice Leadership and how inclusive practice in schools is critical to improve attainment and achievement for young people experiencing social and economic disadvantage.

Annette participated in the first SCEL Fellowship programme during her second headship. Her area of enquiry throughout the SCEL Fellowship programme, alongside its particular focus on developing outstanding head teachers as system leaders, contributing to school improvement within, and beyond schools in the wider context of Scottish education, was on developing high quality leadership in Inclusive Practice.

Since being awarded SCEL Fellowship in 2015, Annette has had a wide variety of opportunities to continue with her own learning, representing SCEL nationally and internationally, working with the Ontario Principals Council, participating in the Deputy First Minister’s Teachers Panel and working within her own local authority to contribute towards school and system and improvement.