MEMBERS AND BOARD OF TRUSTEES
Michelle Currie – Chief Executive
Michelle Currie has over 30 years’ experience of working in education, including 18 years at senior management level. As a National Leader of Education she is well versed in school improvement and has chaired the IEB of a school in Special Measures. Michelle Currie is a former Ofsted inspector, having inspected schools across England under both the Section 10 and Section 5 frameworks. She has held leadership positions in schools around the country including Walsall, Kent and Hastings and has led the setting up of new schools overseeing a number of multi-million pound building projects. Michelle Currie has extensive experience of school governance, having served on four governing bodies in both the primary and secondary sectors.
Penelope Dent – Trustee and Chair
I am delighted to have been appointed as the Chair of the Board of Trustees, as I feel I have the experience, commitment and time to fulfil this role. I have almost 20 years’ experience of governance across a range of schools, both primary and secondary. My early career was in HR and general management, before working for the education sector, focusing on special educational needs. I set up and ran a successful business for 20 years, eventually selling this company to my management team. Having worked as a Business Advisor for a few years, I retired early. This has given me more time to focus on a variety of voluntary work, writing and playing with all my dogs; I have six Border Collies, who keep me very busy!
Kevin Gowans – Trustee and Vice Chair
Kevin Gowans holds a BSc (Hons) in Applied Geography and was employed at The Open University. In the near 30 years working at the University, Kevin undertook a diverse range of roles including academic, management and production activities. He was also module chair for a post-graduate course on Technology Strategy and project manager for a major development, amongst other responsibilities, within the Faculty of Mathematics, Computing and Technology.
Anne Watson – Trustee
Anne is a highly experienced and qualified HR professional (MCIPD) with a strong focus on the development of strategic relationships and the management of resources including Health and Safety. Working at a senior level within a number of market sectors to include Formula 1 Motorsport , World Rally Championship Motorsport, prestige Automotive, Telecommunication and Healthcare industries Anne brings an entrepreneurial mindset in relation to commercial opportunities having had her own businesses both in the UK and the EU, including living in Spain for 10 years.
For the last 8 years Anne has implemented and managed multi-million pound contracts within the Clinical Services industry for the NHS and has also held Executive and Non-Executive positions.
Ayesha Alikhan – Trustee
Ayesha is the Executive Headteacher of a federation of two primary schools in Milton Keynes
Ayser Asif – Trustee
Ayser has worked in central government since 2001 in a number of operational, technology, management and leadership roles both in the UK and overseas serving as a Crown Servant.
He is a member and volunteer at the Institute of Engineering and Technology, and a certified risk practitioner. He has experience with service and contract management, project and programme, risk management, strategy and engineering disciplines. Ayser is currently Chair of Walton High Local Governing Body.
Nicola Roncone – Trustee
Nicola graduated from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne with a BSc (Hons) in Agriculture & Marketing and went on to work in banking, marketing and finance at senior levels throughout the 90’s. After taking a career break to start a family, she retrained as a Primary School teacher and for the past 20 years has taught in various Primary Schools across Milton Keynes. Since 2015, her focus has been Inclusion and Special Needs and Nicola spent her last 5 years of employment at an MKET school as a Senior Leader with particular responsibility for these areas. Nicola has operated as a Designated Safeguarding Lead for the past 7 years.
Now retired, Nicola volunteers at the MK Art Gallery, travels, enjoys all aspects of cooking and baking and reads as part of a book group that she helped establish some years ago.
Raymond Moodley – Trustee and Chair of QPO Committee
Raymond’s personal philosophy of lifelong learning has seen him gain expertise, and work in a variety of fields both locally and internationally, including in engineering, business strategy, technology, and more recently in artificial intelligence. He has over 20 years of business and technology consulting experience, and over the years has helped some of the world’s largest companies achieve their strategic objectives. Outside of work, Raymond is very active in societal enhancement. Together with his colleagues, Raymond founded the Research in Societal Enhancement (RiSE) group at De Montfort university that focusses on using artificial intelligence to uplift society. In this regard, he has conducted research and implemented solutions to address key societal issues including in Education, Child Poverty, Crime Prevention, Healthcare, and Environmental Sustainability. Raymond is also currently the chair of governors at Willen Primary School, and has been a governor at the school for over 9 years. At home, Raymond and his wife live in Kents Hill, and have two adult daughters (both of whom attended MKET schools); and in his spare time he enjoys golf, cycling, and travelling the world.
Wayne Preston – Trustee and Chair of PFF Committee
Wayne graduated with BA (Hons) Public Administration and entered the NHS Finance Graduate Training Scheme in the early 1990’s. He has worked in the NHS for over 30 years, and has held numerous senior roles including Transformation Director, Finance Director, Deputy Finance Director, Corporate Charitable Trustee and currently is a Commercial Director. He is a Qualified Accountant and well experienced as a member of Boards, Audit, Finance and Charitable Funds Committees as well as wider corporate governance structures. He has experience as both an Executive and a Non-executive Director. Out of work he enjoys running, and in his 50Th Year on the planet ran the equivalent of the length of the Red Sea for a local charity (1398 miles).
Julie Whitehead – Trustee
Julie has had many years teaching experience working in primary schools and also as a Local Governing Body Governor and Chair
Jim Hudson OBE – Member
Jim’s career has included being Head of Two Mile Ash school (where he received his OBE for services to Education) and Director of Education at both the Cognita and Minerva Independent School Groups.
He has also been an Advisor to OFSTED, the National College for School Leadership, and the Teacher Training Agency. He founded NASBTT (The National Association of School Based Teacher Trainers) and was Chairman of OSCITT (the Outstanding Schools School-Centred Initial Teacher Training Consortium)
Chris Wigglesworth – Member
Richard Smith – Member
Richard Smith is a Chartered Accountant with over 30 years’ experience of guiding businesses through challenging environments. His responsibilities have included finance and accounting, human resources, IT, facilities management and pensions. He is currently Chief Financial Officer, European Operations at Thrive, an international IT Services company specialising in managing and securing critical IT infrastructure for the Defence, Public and Financial Services Sectors. Richard graduated from the University of Birmingham with a BSc (Hons) in Mathematical Sciences.
Justine Ives – Member
Justine is Leader of Projects and Place at Bedford Borough Council. She was previously Chair of Kents Hill school and an MKET Trustee.