Board of Trustees

Board of Trustees

Mark Whitby 

(SEND & Pupil Premium)
I am a former Head Teacher of Alternative Provision, Special Education and Mainstream Schools, with particular expertise in Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties, leadership coaching, staffing and finance. I was for 12 years Principal at The Alternative Centre for Education (ACE), a 5-16 Special School in Brighton and Hove, where I also worked as an interim head of three mainstream secondary schools. In 2012 I set up my own business – Acuity Education Ltd – and have been working as a freelance consultant ever since, starting out as Executive Head of the West Sussex Alternative Provision College (WSAPC) and Associate CEO of Orchard Hill College Academy Trust. I am a qualified leadership coach and my current contacts include being a Specialist Adviser for New Schools Network and co-ordinating the start-up of two new free schools.

Mr Mark Anderson
VIce Chair

I worked as a lawyer in London for 20 years. I now work part time as a garden designer and own a small holiday house business in the Scottish Highlands. I have been a Governor of several schools in Bromley over the last six years, gaining particular experience in governance and improving standards in teaching and learning.

Mr Simon Garrill

Having taught and led, in and around London for the last 25 Years, I established two new schools in Haringey, running a small multi academy trust. Passionate about social mobility, fairness and opportunities for young people, I am looking forward to leading Education for the 21st Century to ensure that all of our schools achieve excellence through collaboration. 

Mr Paul Featherstone


Mr David McKivett

I have been a school governor for many years, serving both as chair of governors at a primary school and the chair of trustees at a secondary academy. I am committed to comprehensive education as the best way to maximise the potential of all pupils. With a legal background and many years experience in the travel industry negotiating and drafting contracts, dealing with intellectual property matters and managing both corporate and financial services compliance I now work on a freelance basis providing a range of services and have also trained and practise as a lay funeral celebrant.

Mr Richard DeFriend

Until I retired in 2013 I spent my whole career in higher education, firstly at the University of Kent where I was, successively, a senior lecturer in law; then head of the law school, and finally Pro Vice Chancellor with responsibility for, among other things, establishing links with secondary schools and tertiary colleges across the whole county. From 1998 till my retirement I was a member of the College of Law’s executive board on which I was responsible for academic standards and quality assurance, Director of its largest centre in Bloomsbury, and Professor of Legal Education. On my retirement, the College (now University) of Law awarded me an emeritus professorship. I have also served on a number of non-executive boards, including the governing bodies of Thanet and Mid-Kent Colleges; and the Kent Institute of Art and Design, where I was chair of governors. In that capacity I helped to lead KIAD’s merger with its counterpart in Surrey to create what is now the University for the Creative Arts. From 2014 until I stepped down in July 2018, I was chair of governors at Evelyn Grace Academy in Brixton which is part of the Ark Academy chain.

Mrs Claire Singleton

(Safeguarding & Looked after child Trustee)
I qualified as a solicitor in 1991 and worked for two well known regional firms. I specialised in employment law and, in time, took on the roles of staff partner and managing partner. During the course of my career, I advised and worked with a wide range of clients including small and large businesses, charities and educational establishments. I developed and presented many training courses for HR and line managers. I retired in April 2015.I have served as a longstanding governor at Coopers and more recently at Mead Road Infant School. I was a trustee of the William Willett Learning Trust. During my spare time, I sing in a local choir, enjoy walking and spending time with my grand daughters.

MR James toop

I am an experienced charity Chief Executive in the education and youth sectors, and passionate about social mobility and opportunities for young people.  I have recently launched Bite Back 2030, a new 10-year youth-led movement to halve childhood obesity by 2030. Before that I was Chief Executive of Ambition Institute for eight years leading it through two mergers to become the largest leadership development charity in education.  I was a teacher in the inaugural cohort of Teach First and have been a Chair of Governors at three schools over the last ten years.  I grew up in Petts Wood and still live in South East London with my wife and two young children.

Mr Brendan Hollyer

I have been a school governor for eighteen years, serving on governing bodies across all phases of primary and secondary education. I also have experience of governance of a special school. I am recognised for my ability to work with senior leaders to drive significant, rapid, sustainable improvement and in 2014 was designated as a National Leader of Governance. I currently serve as Chair of one school in a Multi-Academy Trust (MAT) and Vice-Chair of another school in a different MAT.

MR Neil Roskilly

I was a teacher, headteacher, local authority foundation governor and sat on the national committee of the General Teaching Council for England. For eleven years, I was chief executive of a national educational charity and membership association, advising schools and headteachers across the country. I regularly featured in the national press and advised awarding organisations and government departments at a policy level. My work now includes acting as trustee for a number of national charities, including Beat Eating Disorders and We - Free the Children.

Ms Penelope Jones

I have a wide range of experience to support the continued development and improvement of E21C and its schools. I began my professional life in retail leadership for a number of national chains. I moved into education teaching and leading in a range of settings, mostly inner London. My first Headship was of the first primary academy in the UK. My latest role was as Leading Headteacher of an multi Academy Trust in Kent and Bexley. I now work in a number of voluntary sectors including courts, prisons and adult mental health.

Dr Rachael Norman

I started my career in education 25 years ago as a History teacher in a Lambeth Secondary school and currently work with primary and secondary schools across London as a School Effectiveness Adviser. As a former Secondary Headteacher, I am passionate about education and I have a Doctorate in Education from King’s College, London.  I am currently Chair of the Local Governing Board of a Merton secondary school. I seek to use the latest educational research to apply best practice in driving school improvement and my main objective is to enhance the quality of teaching and learning to secure aspirational outcomes for pupils of all abilities. I firmly believe in education as a liberating, powerful and empowering force that changes lives and brings about social justice and equality.