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Strive4 Academy Trust

Striving for excellence...


Jon Drane - Chair of the Trust

As the senior pastor at the church neighbouring Ray Lodge Primary School and a trustee of the local community centre, Jon provides very close links to the community the school serves. His responsibilities as pastor and Chair of the Governing Body, allow Jon to advise the school on a range of aspects from management and recruitment, to marketing and mediation. Jon joined the Ray Lodge governing body in 2011 driven by a real desire to see all aspects of the school improve, especially the level of teaching and learning - for the benefit of the children. Under Jon’s tenure as chair of governors, the school improved its Ofsted rating to Outstanding.



Alex MacNeill - Chair of the Resource and Audit Committee

For the past year Alex is employed by the Department of Transport as an accountant. Prior to his current employment, he worked for the National Audit Office He was responsible for the audit of the Department for Education’s Academies Sector Annual Report & Account, so he has excellent knowledge of the operating environment that academies and public services work in. He has served as a school governor in LB Redbridge since 2007, and has helped to guide two schools from unsatisfactory to outstanding. As well as financial management, his knowledge and interests are in data analysis (especially assessment data to ensure all pupils are achieving their full potential), risk management and staff well-being. His full CV can be found on LinkedIn.


Paul Canal

Term of office: 1-9-17 to 1-9-21

Paul was the Managing Director of a Recruitment and Exhibition Company and has extensive experience both as a Charity Trustee and Chair of Governors in a London Primary School. A former Director of Regeneration body Stratford City Challenge, and Adult “Back to Work” training company Newham Wise, his commercial experience encompasses insurance, sales and marketing, “Search and Selection”, logistics and Social Media. Paul is also a London borough councillor.


Ikbal Hussain

Term of office: 1-9-17 to 1-9-21

Ikbal is a contracts and performance manager working for local government. He has extensive experience in managing large third party contracts, holding suppliers accountable for delivery against key performance indicators and strategic planning of ICT services. He has served as the chair of governors at Farnham Green for 2 years and has been a governor for over 5 years. With a keen interest in education and engaging local communities with school activities, Ikbal lives locally to Farnham Green Primary School. 



Chris Curtis

Term of office: 1-9-19 to 31-8-23

Chris retired as Headteacher in December 2017 with over thirty years experience of working in good and outstanding schools. She also worked as a mentor and Local Leader of Education supporting schools in experiencing difficult times. She was an active member of the Diocese of Brentwood as well as the Redbridge Education Partnership working with Headteachers on various projects in schools.




Steven Hogan

After many years impacting on the lives of the young people around the Woodford area, Steven Hogan is the headteacher at Woodbridge High School within the London Borough of Redbridge.  Steven is an experienced leader of school strategy and direction, manager of systems and finances, student welfare and conduct and is fully committed to catering for all students' needs and ambitions, whatever their background.  He believes that being part of  schools with a child-centred approach is the very best way to increase life chances for young people and to help them learn about the world around them. He believes children and young people should have every opportunity to achieve the very best that they can. 




Amanda Jennings

With a proven track record of educational innovation, development and improvement, Amanda has an extensive range of leadership and strategic experience across the primary and middle school sector.  Prior to her role as CEO in Strive4 Academy, Amanda had successfully led several schools from requiring improvement to good and outstanding with Ofsted reports reflecting the ambitious culture of aspiration within each organisation.  Amanda has particular expertise in teaching and learning, safeguarding and developing leaders; she has led to school improvement work both locally and nationally.  Amanda has over 30 years’ experience in Education, with over 15 years experience of being a headteacher and she has held many positions of responsibility and leadership within schools.  Amanda holds both the national professional qualification for executive leaders and the national professional qualification for headship. 



Strive4 Academy Trust is a charitable company limited by guarantee in England and Wales registered number: 10863245.
Registered Address: Strive4 Academy Trust, Ray Lodge Primary School, Snakes Lane East, Woodford Green, IG8 7JQ