Our Trust Leadership Team

Claire Penfold - CEO

Claire graduated with a Chemistry degree and trained as a science teacher, she worked in a number of schools in leadership roles including Head of science and fifteen years of senior leadership including seven years as Deputy Principal at Launceston College, with a wide range of responsibilities ranging from timetabling to SENDCo.

In 2015 Claire was seconded to Cornwall Council as a Secondary School Improvement Officer, where she was responsible for holding Headteachers to account for their schools’ performance. Claire has considerable strengths with understanding school data, identifying underachievement and acting to improve the performance of staff and students.

Claire worked across the Launceston College MAT as Director of Standards having oversight of the quality assurance and the curriculum in all of the five schools before being appointed as interim CEO in September 2019.

Lynsey Slater - Principal, Atlantic Academy

Born in Devon, Lynsey studied at Royal Holloway, University of London, achieving a first class honours in Environmental Biology. She completed her teaching qualification in 2004, and went on to successfully gain a Masters in Education in 2013.

Lynsey has taught science at a variety of schools within the Trust, holding a range of positions from Head of Year to Deputy Principal at Launceston College and acting Principal of Egloskerry Primary School during Emma Kerr's maternity leave.

Lynsey's vision for Atlantic Academy as it develops is to create a safe, caring and supportive learning environment that allows for individual differences and learning styles to be celebrated. As Nelson Mandela stated, 'Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world', Lynsey believes that all young people should have the opportunities and support to become the best that they can be.

Dr Claire Ankers - Principal, Bideford College

Dr Ankers has a degree in Environmental Science from the University of Reading and a PhD in Physical Geography from the University of Exeter. She also completed a PGCE in teaching Secondary Geography at Exeter University and has been awarded the NPQH, the National Practitioner Qualification for Headship. Dr Ankers has taught Geography at Bideford College since 2004 and has held a number of middle and senior leadership positions at the college.

Having grown up and been educated in the North Devon area Dr Ankers is passionate about ensuring that young people living in coastal and rural communities have the same employment and education opportunities as those living elsewhere. She is committed to ensuring that the young people of Bideford have access to the best teaching, curriculum, advice and guidance based on the best practice internationally and latest research.

Outside of college Dr Ankers enjoys spending time in the local area with friends, family and the school dog Orlagh, she also likes to travel having visited many countries in 6 of the 7 continents.

Jenn Burn - Principal, Launceston College

Jenn joined Launceston College in September 2009 as Assistant Principal Key Stage 5 and, after more than a decade of successful senior leadership in this role, she secured a permanent appointment as Principal in March 2020.

Born in Scotland, Jenn studied at Glasgow University from 1987-91, achieving an MA in History and Politics. She completed her teaching qualification in secondary education at Jordanhill College of Education, 1991-92, before relocating to Cornwall to start her teaching career at St Austell College in September 1992, teaching A level History, Philosophy and Ethics. Jenn worked her way up to a leadership position in the Further Education sector and after 10 successful years of A level teaching, she made the unusual move across to secondary education, joining Wadebridge School as Head of Sixth Form in June 2003. During her time at Wadebridge she developed a passion for teaching A level Psychology and she welcomed the opportunity to continue to teach Psychology today in her role as Principal.

Jenn's vision for Launceston College as it expands successfully into the 2020’s is to lead a College that inspires and enables everyone, whatever their starting point, to achieve their best and to become the very best version of themselves that they can be. Her vision is to ensure that all students aspire to excellence and appreciate the importance and the value of their education.

Emma Kerr - Executive Principal at Egloskerry and Launceston Primary School, and Lead on Primary Standards

Emma holds the National Practitioner Qualification for Headship (NPQH), has a BSc (Hons) degree in Business and completed her PGCE teacher training at the University of Plymouth's Exmouth campus (Rolle College). Prior to being a teacher she worked in London buying programming for ITV but moved to Cornwall in 2005 to train as a teacher, be closer to family and enjoy being by the sea.

She has taught in a variety of schools, across all age ranges, in both Devon and Cornwall and also in Sydney, Australia. Emma is the Prince's Teaching Institute (PTI) South West Hub lead, and Co-Lead Nationally, delivering high-quality and subject specific Professional Development for teaching staff. The South West Hub consists of 21 schools and positively impacts hundreds of staff and thousands of pupils.

A keen petrol-head, Emma started the Greenpower Goblin Project at Egloskerry in 2008; children design, build and race electric kit cars. She thoroughly enjoys delivering lessons through a cross-curricular topic led approach to learning. Emma is now a Trustee of Greenpower Educational Trust. She has a keen interest in polar exploration, especially Shackleton, and has enjoyed sharing this with the children via her 'Antarctica' topic work. She is a member of the Geographic Association Early Years and Primary Phase Committee and regularly writes articles for publication.

Kristina Harrison - Principal, Altarnun Primary School, and SendCo for Primaries

Kristina joined Altarnun Primary School in March 2017 after working in various educational roles throughout Cornwall, England and for the Ministry Of Defence schools in Germany. She also holds a BSc degree in Deaf Studies from the University of Bristol and completed her SCITT teacher training course at Cornwall College. During her 15 years in education, Mrs Harrison has been an Advanced Skills Teacher, EYFS Moderator, Children’s Centre Teacher, Deputy Head and Principal. After 13 years in Senior Leadership roles, she is now extremely proud to be the Executive Principal for Altarnun and Egloskerry Primary Schools.

Having taught right across the primary age range, with experience in large MOD schools and small rural schools, her passion and educational approach is grounded in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) ethos of exploratory and immersive learning. She is dedicated to encouraging the children and teams she works with to achieve their full potential, by promoting positive psychology and wellbeing so that they can thrive and succeed as resilient learners.

Having moved back to the family home in Cornwall, with her husband, two children and two dogs, Mrs Harrison loves to explore the wonderful counties of Cornwall and Devon in her camper van; walking, cycling and navigating the beautiful moors, beaches and coast paths.

Dan Wendon - Director of Teaching and Learning

Dan studied English Language and Literature at the University of Oxford. After working for Mencap,

the learning disability charity, he trained to be a teacher. He has worked as an English teacher in

London and Cornwall, and has always taken a deep satisfaction from supporting students to aspire

to achieve more than they thought possible.

Dan has undertaken a range of subject leadership roles, including as an Advanced Skills Teacher of

English. Dan was awarded the Student Nominated Teacher of the Year Award in 2018 at the

Cornwall Teacher Awards.

After working at Launceston College as Assistant Principal for Teaching and Learning, Dan was

appointed as Director of Teaching and Learning across the Trust in 2019, and has worked with

teachers and school leaders to create a Trust pedagogical framework which seeks to develop a

coherent shared narrative for teaching and learning across all of the schools, and support the

development of high-quality teaching. Dan has created and co-created a number of Professional

Development Programmes for teachers and middle and senior leaders.

Dan has led the Trust’s longstanding relationship with the Royal Shakespeare Company, through

which many teachers and students in the region have accessed opportunities to train and perform at

a national level.

Dan founded the Aspire Programme at Launceston College, an academic mentoring programme

which has successfully supported many students to gain places at the most prestigious and highly

selective universities in the UK.