We believe, and are told, that our partnership is integral to the success of WiSH. Although we have both held leadership roles in schools, our subsequent careers have developed in different ways, so we bring complementary skills and expertise, experiences and knowledge to our partnership. Feedback over the years suggests that this blend creates a whole that is much greater than the sum of the parts.

We met when Meg, in her role as Senior County Inspector, commissioned Eve, then leading women’s education development work at the Industrial Society, to deliver an annual residential training course as part of the Essex women’s leadership initiative.  This programme had great success over the 10 years it ran, dramatically increasing the number of women headteachers and senior leaders in Essex schools. 

As Assistant Director leading the women’s campaign at the National College for School Leadership (NCSL), Meg invited Eve to be lead consultant.  This second project of shared goals and common purpose cemented their working relationship, and they set up WiSH in 2006 in response to the then headteacher recruitment crisis. Today they still draw on the same principles to guide all of their projects: precise objectives, clear strategy, creativity of approach, enlisting support from role models, effective working relationships and partnerships, appropriate feedback and rigorous evaluation.

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I first met Meg and Eve when I attended a Women into School Headship (WiSH) conference last year. I was struck by the ease with which they enabled me to reflect on the way I presented, and the barriers I might face when applying for Headship roles. Meg and Eve are adept at leading you through the process of self-reflection and the development of the subsequent relevant skills that are required for the Headship selection process.

I then engaged in executive coaching with Meg following an unsuccessful first Headship application. Meg’s approach was literally life-changing for me. She enabled me to approach my second Headship interview with a completely different mindset. I saw myself as a Headteacher in waiting, not a Vice Principal applying for their next role.

Meg has a supportive and enabling focus but her attention to detail and element of high challenge is absolutely what contributed to my ability to successfully secure my first Headship. Meg supported me through the first and second interview days and is supporting me as a new Headteacher during my first 100 days. She understands me both professionally and personally.

She has visited my school and along with Eve will be providing training for middle leaders. Meg and Eve are different because they take the time to evaluate every last detail. I would recommend both Meg and Eve without hesitation- in fact you can’t afford not to engage with them.
— Allie Denholm, Headteacher South Shields Community School

Meg Maunder

Meg Maunder

Meg

In supporting governors with their headship appointments, Meg found that few women easily convinced appointing panels of their capability to lead and manage large schools.  When training for Headship was first mooted, Meg believed that it would be excellent for the profession and would ensure equality of opportunity for both men and women. As the Training and Development Centre Manager for the East Region for the National Professional Development for Headship (NPQH), she saw at first-hand the impact of the qualification on women. They felt more confident to apply for headships because they were now qualified to undertake the role!

As a leadership consultant for the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), Meg supports governors in the appointment of headteachers and is aware that too few women put themselves forward for the ultimate role of headship. She is on a mission to convince senior women leaders that they can do the job and do it very well!

My passion for this work stems from my experience of teaching and leadership in organisations over many years. This has led to my strong belief that talent is not sufficiently nurtured and nourished. The potential of too many teachers is lost. It is important that we convince able school leaders that they can aspire to headship. The emphasis of my work is to ensure that they are recognised and affirmed so that they increase in confidence and believe sufficiently in themselves ‘to put their hat in the ring’ and apply for senior leadership roles.
 

Eve Warren

Eve Warren

Eve

Alongside her equalities campaigning and women’s development training, Eve led her own training consultancy, specialising in wellbeing and workplace stress management programmes, and supporting clients in and outside of the education sector with career development, presentation skills, and assertiveness training. Along the way she co-authored two successful books, on Stress in the Workplace and Women’s’ Self-Development.

She started coaching when asked to work one-to-one with clients, and this part of her work has grown significantly over the last 20 years.  Clients will bring a range of topics to coaching, from longer-term career development matters to managing specific and immediate workplace challenges.  Eve has a particular reputation in preparing candidates for headteachers interviews, with considerable success.

My 6th form leadership role in a girls’ school inspired my interest in women’s personal and professional development and set me on the path which has guided all my subsequent activities and interests. Three strands run through my work: self-belief and confidence; personal presentation and relationship skills; boundaries and life-work balance. I train and coach - and constantly learn - in all of these areas. Studies for my M.Ed is in Human Relations and PGCert in Positive Psychology have kept my work grounded in evidence-based good practice, whilst never losing sight of the essential practicalities of what will actually make a difference to your learning and growth.