Until his sudden death in April 2008, NUT General Secretary Steve Sinnott devoted his life and career to the great cause of Education.
As a teacher in Liverpool and Preston, as an NUT committee chair, as it's national president, as Deputy General Secretary and ultimately as General Secretary, Steve's story was one of a commitment to education that grew to encompass ever greater spheres. From his Toxteth classroom to the Addis Ababa prison that held the president of the Ethiopian Teachers' Association to the halls of the United Nations and the Commonwealth secretariat where he pushed tirelessly for international cooperation to broaden access to education across the world - Steve's vision was that teachers, educators, local initiatives and international agencies could unite around a common goal: Education for All.
As he said at the Hugh Gaitskell Memorial Lecture in 2007, “I think there are those who are hopeful supporters and activists for justice, human rights and equality; and there is the rest. Those who exude hope and optimism generate the energy and stimulate the progress that we in education and progressive teacher trade unionism, for example, work for. I find such people are as fascinated as I think I am by the liberating power of education in this country and across the world.”
The Steve Sinnott Foundation was established to continue his work.
David Puttnam first became well known as an Academy Award winning film producer. In 1997, he retired from the film industry to join the then Secretary of State, David Blunkett M.P., at the Department for Education, and became Labour life peer, Lord Puttnam of Queensgate. He subsequently served as chairman of the Education Standards Task Force and then the General Teaching Council for England.
In 1998, he founded the National Teaching Awards. David was knighted in 2005 and has been Deputy Chairman of Channel Four since the same year. He was the founding chair of the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts. In 2002, he became the UK President of UNICEF. David Puttnam expresses himself very proud to have been a close friend of Steve Sinnott and very pleased now to be associated with the Foundation as its patron.
Jerry is a director and Chairperson of the Steve Sinnott Foundation and a senior member of the National Executive Committee of the National Union of Teachers, England and Wales. Outside of this Jerry Glazier continues to teach in Essex.
Mary Sinnott is a founding Director of the Steve Sinnott Foundation. Mary, like Steve, is a native Liverpudlian; she began her career as a primary teacher in Preston in 1991 upon encouragement from Steve.
Following Steve’s death, together with the other founding Directors Graham & Jerry, she wanted Steve’s legacy in striving to ensure that all children everywhere could access a quality education to continue. So the Steve Sinnott Foundation came into being.
Mary is mother to Stephen & Kate, and proud Nana to Isabella, Robbie and Freddie. Much of her time is divided between her family and the Foundation. She also enjoys reading, trying to draw and travelling with friends.
Graham developed the original concept of the Steve Sinnott Foundation and is a founding Director. He had a long career as Senior Solicitor at the National Union of Teachers, working closely with Steve. They were good friends.
Graham now splits his time between the Foundation and his role as an education law consultant. He writes on education law and politics and is a member of the UK education policy pressure group, New Visions for Education. If he finds spare time, he reads, travels and enjoys ski-ing.
Ann has worked in a variety of roles at an operational and strategic level in the public and charity sector for over 25 years. Ann has a special interest in the provision of quality holistic education and supporting the development of people and communities, especially women and girls. Ann has worked internationally as a volunteer and consultant and was proud to be an olympic torch bearer in the 2012 Olympics, having been nominated for her charity work. Ann enjoys travelling and spending time with her family.
My name is Billy Jean, I was born on 10th October 1988 in Port-Au-Prince HAITI
At the age of 3 years, due to difficult family circumstances I joined the NPH (Nuestros pequenos hermanos) family which is a non profit organisation who take care of orphans and disadvantaged children in the Caribbean and Latin America. Now I am in my final year of law school and I hope to obtain a Masters Degree in International Law. I am still involved with NPH, volunteering and carrying out some leadership tasks.
I like travelling, I used to travel to the USA mostly in summer time to work as a volunteer at a YMCA summer camp. In 2013 I was awarded the Made a difference award at YMCA Deer Valley Family Camp and in 2016 I won the big heart award at Camp Soles. My aspiration for the future is to stay involved in humanitarian work to support to children have a second chance in their lives just like I had. I also want to contribute as far as I can to change the situation of my country by making a difference in the lives of people through education like the Steve Sinnott Foundation is currently doing and I am proud to be part of the team in Haiti.
Penny is a consultant member of the Steve Sinnott Foundation’s Education Team. After eighteen years as a primary headteacher of two schools, she became an independent education consultant, an associate of Cambridge University’s ‘Leadership for Learning’ network, a specialist in performance management and a personal and professional coach. With other education team members she wrote the Educating for Education guidelines adopted by the Foundation to support its work. Penny has had several articles published. Committed to supporting working mothers, she has run a support group for thirty years and co-authored the book, ‘Spinning Plates’.
Will Thomas makes up part of the Steve Sinnott Foundations Education Team as a consultant specialising in training and coaching. He is the director of Vision for Learning Ltd, a published author in the fields of coaching and leadership and works with people to support their development.
Will’s passion for positive change is infectious and evident from the first time you meet him. His training and coaching is described as “gently challenging the comfort zones and enthusing people to achieve new levels of professional performance”. He is a trustee of Manisha UK and works with The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award supporting young people to develop expedition skills.
Nicky is an education consultant. With Mary Sinnott and Penny Clayton, she co-authored the Educating for Education guidelines which the Foundation has adopted to support its work. Nicky is a member of the Thank Goodness It’s Monday (TGIM) group.
Jemma has over 15 years experience in childcare and caring for vulnerable adults. She received her degree in Arts and education in 2009 and has dedicated her career to the education and development of children ever since. Jemma has held a variety of roles including SEN coordinator - nursery Manager and as a camp consular working in Camp America supporting children with SEND. She is a great believer in the philosophy that children learn through play. Outside of work Jemma loves spending time with her daughter and family whilst enjoying outdoors pursuits and arts and crafts.
Hayley has worked in education for many years and took some time out to raise her family. Hayley is keen to get back into education and is currently training for her Certificate in Education and Training whilst working with the Foundation part-time as Personal Assistant to our CE.
Evadne Bygrave is an educator, life coach and innovator. Her passion to make education inclusive to all learners has been the driving force behind all her enterprises. She founded Sing a book in 2014 to engage children in reading through song, based on books read in primary schools. As a singer/song writer Evadne has been able to capture the essence books and infuse them with catchy rhythms that are enjoyed by all.
Not satisfied with writing one song for a book, in 2015, she wrote 7 for Anthony Browne’s Into The Forest, this became her first musical playscript. The second, Kate Meets Dido Elizabeth Belle based on the book by David Gleave, was completed in 2016. Evadne is in full support of the Steve Sinnott Foundation’s Education for All Campaign and was honoured when given the opportunity to write their campaign song, A Better Place to Be.
Her work in primary and secondary schools was the inspiration for the SCIP-School Career Intervention Programme; which has been designed to raise the learning aspirations and career prospects of disadvantaged underachieving pupils entering secondary school. The programme is fuelled with Evadne’s determination to give learners the opportunity to an education that is accessible, challenging and life-changing.
I was led to the non-profit sector through my enthusiasm for conservation, volunteering for several environmental charities whilst studying my Biology degree. Driven by my enjoyment of being an online tutor, on graduating this summer I became a Learning Support Assistant at a local secondary school where I support students who have additional needs within mainstream education. Realising that my future lies in charity, I decided to expand my experience and found the perfect match in the Steve Sinnott Foundation, where I have mainly been assisting fundraising from the NUT. Working with Mary and Ann has given me confidence to pursue a career in the sector – I am currently completing the Charity Apprentice course with Child.org and this summer will be starting a Programme Coordinator role at upReach, supporting less-advantaged students to access professional employment.
I am a senior leader with significant experience managing behavior and inclusive practices across education. I have worked in mainstream, special, secure and community education settings, in urban, suburban and rural locations. I specialize in the development of inclusive education services for young people aged 11-18.
I have been invited to speak on access to equality, inclusive education for many organisations including Goldsmiths University, Newman University, Hip Hop Education UK at UCL, the Royal Society of Arts, the National Union of Teachers, the Steve Sinnott Foundation and others more. I have also written about Inclusion and Education for interviews and articles published in The Guardian, Engage 13, Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Travelling Fellowships and others. I have held strategic roles within schools, unions and advisory groups including as school governor, local community interest companies as well as several academic research groups.
Bringing their long experience from numerous internet ventures, Simon and Julia are working with the Foundation to ensure that our stories are told effectively and that the benefits of our work are communicated succinctly to the world.
Over the period of a week, I had the pleasure of working with the Steven Sinnott Foundation alongside Ann. During my time, I learnt about the production of their magazine Engage, learnt how to create labels on Microsoft Word and researched some education projects. I conducted interviews in order to promote the Foundation’s work, which it to support the achievement of the sustainable development goal 4, quality Education for All children Everywhere. Overall, I found this work experience with the Foundation very enjoyable and very useful as I hope to pursue a future career in journalism.
I have been living in the UK, for just over a year, and have come to love the country I had been introduced to, through my love of old historical novels, and English literature. My fascination of the English way of life is insatiable. By profession I have been a teacher in Karachi Pakistan, I know the importance of facilitating a learning experience which provides children with the opportunity to achieve their individual potential, contributes to raising standards of student attainment and helps in their personal and academic growth.
The Steve Sinnott Foundation helps to provide education to children in the poorest regions of this planet. They encourage people to dream high, and guide and support them to achieve their goals. They reach out to the farthest corners of the earth in their quest of a dream that is dear to us all, EDUCATION FOR ALL. I am thrilled to be volunteering with Steve Sinnott Foundation, and feel blessed to be able to contribute towards their success.
The Steve Sinnott Foundation was Founded in May, 2009.
Registered Charity no. 1130814 (England), SC046031 (Scotland)
Company limited by guarantee no. 6696272
Our Accounts are available on the website of the Charity Commission for England and Wales
The Steve Sinnott Foundation
15 Clarendon Road
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