Jane Manzone

Ruth Luzmore

Kathleen Gilbert

My name is Jane Manzone and I have been teaching for 23 years mainly in London schools.I am currently on the SLT of a small Catholic primary school in the Barbican and I lead English and teach a Year 6 class full time. I am very happy that our inaugural New Voices conference is at the CLPE as The Power of Reading teaching materials and courses that I have attended at the CLPE have been one of the biggest influences on how I lead my subject over the years. I was always interested in the history of education, pedagogy and political influences that impinge on my job, but I wouldn't say I was particularly knowledgeable or well read about these things until I started a blog through Twitter in 2012. I then began attending education events and eventually speaking at them. These type of events have been fundamental to shaping my philosophy of education. I have met many people who have challenged my thinking and given me access to new perspectives about education. Recently, however, I had stopped attending conferences as I felt that much of the conversation was becoming repetitive. I was disappointed that out of 430,000 plus teachers in the country only a handful were influential on social media and on the conference scene. It felt to me very much like it was time for some new energy and enthusiasm and some unique perspectives we hadn't heard before. I really want New Voices to grow and give a platform to chalkface teachers who may have attended or watched from the sidelines for years. Many of whom have brilliant ideas and yet have never spoken out before.
I’m Ruth Luzmore and I have been in Primary education for the last 12 years mainly in central London. Having taught across the Primary phases and been a Literacy lead and Deputy Head. I am currently the Primary headteacher of a through school – my first headship.
A few years ago, I completed a masters in leadership which has led on to a part-time PhD (very part-time my supervisor would say). Through this, I became interested in how we can bridge the gap between education research and teachers and how teachers can access and evaluate what relevant and good evidence is. All of this while trying to retain teachers in the profession by creating a culture in schools which staff feel supported, interested and satisfied with their work.
My interest in New Voices came about as while voices of academics in education are numerous and varied, I felt that voices from teachers were neither of these things. Social media has helped to give a platform for teachers to communicate, but to me it felt like the names on teacher conference events were becoming somewhat predictable. There are myriad academics whose work I can read, engage with and listen to at conferences, but the same cannot be said of teaching practitioners.
It is my hope that New Voices can make a difference here by giving an opportunity for those who have not spoken before to step forward, add to our collective practitioner knowledge and spark some debate along the way. I’m delighted to be working alongside Jane and Kathleen and am looking forward to seeing what the future for New Voices may hold.
I’m Kathleen Gilbert. After 16 years of classroom teaching, I pivoted to become a professional tutor. I now work with students in London and virtually around the world to build confidence alongside academic skills.
I am Canadian born and educated; having previously taught in the USA and Canada, I came to the UK with a wide range of experiences in the education field. While originally training at the primary level, I spent many years working in secondary schools (ages 13-18) developing dance and musical theatre curricula. In addition to teaching school, I run my own Scottish Highland dance studio, and travel the around the world to judge competitions and lecture.
I strongly believe our job as teachers is to develop the whole child, valuing their individual strengths while encouraging a passion for lifelong learning. My overarching goal is to empower students to take responsibility for their learning and their choices. A teacher’s job isn’t finished at the end of the school year. My most rewarding moments have come years after a child has left my classroom when I see they have grown into happy, production citizens of the world.
I’m excited to continue working with Jane and Ruth on New Voices as we hope to bring new discussions to the education field.