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#EdInfluence - podcast for education leaders


Trusted by thousands of education providers across the country and an approved partner of the NGA, NAHT, CST, ASCL and ISBL, we are a national law firm helping our clients and partner organisations shape and influence education policy.

Providing insight and advice to education leaders in a collaborative and innovative way – our aim is to help you do what is right for your pupils and staff.

#EdInfluence draws on our own experiences and those of our clients and partners, to uncover the insights and beliefs of people who are truly invested in shaping the education space right now and those that are passionate about making a difference in the way in which we educate our children and young people.

Join our sector leading lawyers, Mark Blois and Nick MacKenzie as we cut through the policies, politics and red tape to engage in honest, humanised conversations with some of today’s most inspiring leaders.

When speaking about the series, Nick said “what has been fascinating is hearing about the incredible things that are happening right now within schools and academies – for example, how Shireland are harnessing technology to support learning, how co-founder of Games Workshop Ian Livingstone believes in the notion of learning through play. We hear how Paul Whiteman is passionate about removing the fear from data and installing confidence in the teaching profession, and our client Hugh Greenway talks about the purpose of education and piloting Ofsted's new inspection framework.... everyone will enjoy listening to these real stories…”

Available on Podbean, SoundCloud, iTunes, Spotify and Google podcasts - listen, share, subscribe and join in the #EdInfluence conversation today.



Series 1

Episode 1: With the importance of good governance in the education sector well documented, we are joined by Andrew Warren, the then Chair of The Teaching Schools Council and Stephen Munday to look at what next for the self-improving school system.

Episode 2: Freedom to be different. In this episode we revisit the concept of autonomy, accountability and curriculum with Leora Cruddas, CEO of Federation of School Trusts (FASNA) and discuss the future direction of the organisation. 

Episode 3: ASCL’s General Secretary Geoff Barton and Director of Policy Julie McCulloch lead the conversations in this episode to explore the importance of ethical leadership before considering what does a successful leader look like? 

Episode 4: Ian Livingstone CBE takes us behind the UK’s high-tech creative and video games industries for a thought-provoking look at the national curriculum. We explore possible ways of making it more engaging and consider the use of learning through play to develop critical thinking, problem solving and creativity skills.

Episode 5: Pupil performance, inspections and improvement. In this episode NAHT’s General Secretary Paul Whiteman joins us as we seek to recreate an accountability system that’s fit for today’s school system and consider the direction for future reforms. 

Episode 6: Having successfully inspired thousands of young people through integrated learning systems Shireland Collegiate Academy Trust’s Executive Principle Sir Mark Grundy shares his insights into how their approach has developed over time. We examine what it takes to do it at scale, the importance of being brave and the positive outcomes for pupils who are being encouraged to learn differently.

Episode 7: In this episode Hugh Greenway CEO from the Elliot Foundation Academies Trust joins us to discuss the purpose of education and their experience piloting Ofsted’s new inspection framework. 

Episode 8: In this episode we’re rejoined by Hugh Greenway from the Elliot Foundation to look at his experience of running a large MAT and how the Trust has embedded a strong vision and belief that all pupils can achieve.

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Series 2

Episode 1: Nick Mackenzie, Partner in Browne Jacobson’s Education Team welcomes Graham Feek and Steve Sanderson from Greenwood Academies Trust to discuss the implementation of an innovative digital strategy and the Microsoft Office 365 platform throughout their 35 academies.

Episode 2: Nick MacKenzie, Partner in Browne Jacobson’s Education Team, welcomes Stephen Morales, CEO at Institute of School Business Leadership to discuss the future of school business leadership and the need for pedagogical leaders, governance leaders and business leaders to lean into each other.

Episode 3: Mark Blois is joined by Ambition Institute’s Associate Director of Research & Evaluation Vivien Niblett to discuss their research ‘People Power’ and what can be learnt from multi-academy trusts about how to develop and retain educators.

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Glossary of commonly used phrases for members of academy trusts and trustees of academy boards >

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Glossary of commonly used phrases for members of academy trusts and trustees of academy boards

When carrying out a governance role at an academy trust or multi-academy trust you may hear or read terms in meetings and reports which appear to be ‘jargon’ and include multiple acronyms. If you are new to school/academy governance you may feel overwhelmed and find it hard to remember these words. That’s why we’ve developed a simplified glossary of key terms which are commonly used in education.


Legal updates

be connected newsletter for education - December 2019

In this edition we provide you with the latest in legal updates, news and insight from the sector.


Legal updates

Horizon scanning

In the first of what we hope will become a regular feature in Be Connected, Nick MacKenzie reviews what’s on the horizon for the education sector and briefly shares with you a number of themes.


Legal updates

Is your complaints process fit for purpose?

As part of the advisory service we offer schools, recent enquiries have arisen from academies being contacted by the Department for Education (DfE) about their complaints policies.


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