Who we are

Sue Iqbal – Director

 

Sue has worked in the field of Education and Leadership for 36 years. She initially came from a background of Special Education and then Local Authority advisory work where she has supported schools and leaders from all phases and sectors. Her most recent position was Deputy Director of Education for a Diocese. She has also worked within Public Health, co-ordinating Multi-Agency Policy Development.

As Deputy Diocesan Director for Education, she had responsibility for school effectiveness. She was instrumental in setting up a Diocesan Multi Academy Trust and designed the school improvement model that has enabled the Academies to thrive. Sue worked on the Church of England’s development of Character Education and contributed to ‘The Fruits of the Spirit’ publication. Sue worked to build System Leadership Capacity across the Diocese, working with partners in Local Authorities, Teaching Schools and the Regional Schools Commissoner’s Office.

Sue is an accredited National College Lead Facilitator and has worked extensively on their Teams and Leadership Programmes. She worked with a large education consultancy where she developed and delivered leadership programmes. Sue has a Diploma in Performance Coaching and has full membership of The Association for Coaching.

Sue has experience working with social enterprises, charities and within faith communities. Recent work includes coaching the CEO of a large social enterprise and facilitating the senior team and trustees in renewing the vision and strategic direction. She has led initiatives and written on the subject of Values and Ethos and created tools to enable groups to discuss these effectively. Sue has created a values based model for Sustainable School Improvement – Improving from WithIn – which has shaped her approach to school effectiveness.

Sue has a passion for Capacity Building and Coaching in Education and Third Sector Leadership. She is committed to creating interventions that get to the root of issues and provide a catalyst for real change.

Dr Karamat Iqbal – Director

Karamat has worked in equalities and education over the past 40 years. During the 1970s he was active in the early developments of services for ethnic minority young people and adults. At the age of 20 he pioneered Multicultural Education courses for public sector professionals. Around this time he was also active in promoting cohesion and understanding between different ethnic groups.

Upon qualifying as a teacher he joined the Birmingham Multicultural Support Service. He then worked as a Community Relations Officer (Education) for Wolverhampton Race Equality Council. In his next role, for 13 years, he was the Deputy Director: Equal Rights and Opportunities Management Unit at a post-16 Community College which was seen as a ‘Centre for Excellence’ in equalities.

Next, Karamat started a portfolio career. This involved working as a Local Authority Schools Adviser for Birmingham. His work here included equalities, ‘school remodelling’ and staff wellbeing. Parallel with this, he worked as a Diversity Consultant where he undertook a number of prestigious assignments in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors. This included working for the Department for Education, Cabinet Office and the Home Office.

Karamat has had a longstanding commitment to improving education of disadvantaged young people. He ‘championed’ the educational needs of White Working Class children as evidenced by his work being used as the main text for debate in Parliament. Another example in this respect was the Unlocking Gifts project where he was the Lead Consultant. This role, for the National Society of Church of England, involved overseeing work in 9 English dioceses which had the aim of improving education for the most disadvantaged children. He has recently completed his doctoral research: British Pakistani boys in Birmingham schools; education and the role of religion.

Karamat authored the book ‘Dear Birmingham- a conversation with My Hometown’ with the aim of drawing attention to exclusion of Pakistanis from opportunities and centres of power. He has also published a number of articles on education and equalities. He is a regular blogger, including for the consultancy Optimus Education.

As a part of his voluntary work, Karamat has served on the Board of Directors of Ninestiles Multi-academy Trust where he is currently an Academy Councillor. Recently, he has joined the Board of Jericho Foundation, a social enterprise which provides education, training and employment opportunities for disadvantaged young people and adults. Since 2015 he has also volunteered as a Chaplain at the QE Hospital.

In his spare time, Karamat reads, listens to music, mentors, walks the countryside with his dog Lottie and enjoys conversation with any and all he encounters.