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Ten Teesside schools combine to form Galileo

A designated National Leader in Education (NLE) has taken the helm at a newly-formed Multi-Academy Trust in the Tees Valley

The Galileo Multi-Academy Trust has launched, with Anna Coulson as its newly-appointed Chief Executive, and will be made up of 10 primary academies across Redcar and Cleveland.

Ms Coulson, who has been a leading figure in Catholic primary education for the last 16 years, is the former Executive Headteacher at St Bede’s Academy in Marske, and feels the new trust will operate like a family, with each academy’s individual character celebrated and supported.

She said: “Each school has its own context, its own team, its own character, and these need to be maintained. We recognise that coming together will give us many advantages, but equally, we must preserve the uniqueness of the families we serve.

“I’m blessed to work alongside 10 exceptional headteachers and their drive and passion is truly inspiring. We see ourselves as one big family – a family of schools with a common ethos, that have come together to work in the best interests of our children.”

Ms Coulson was appointed to lead the trust following her success as Director of the Redcar-based Landmark Teaching School Alliance, which offers trailblazing professional development, initial teacher training, and school-to-school support.

She is supported in her new role by a body of volunteer Trustees, led by Chair Nik Tunley, a qualified solicitor and partner at Stockton’s Endeavour Partnership. Ms Coulson said: “From the outset, Nik has offered so much time and commitment to Galileo. He’s a passionate Teessider who, like his fellow trustees, is totally committed to making a difference to the young people in this area. Together the trustees offer me excellent challenge and support.

“All the trustees, who give up their time as volunteers, are highly successful in their respective fields and I’m truly proud that they are such an important part of the family.”

Mr Tunley is also a trustee of the CEO Sleepout fundraising initiative and has worked as a Director of Middlesbrough’s Homeless FC, a Community Interest Company. He said: “The most important thing to us is that our families feel part of the Galileo community, with all our children happy, engaged and empowered.  As well as working together to raise aspirations by providing the best education and experiences for each child, we’ll also embed an overarching culture that strives to achieve value for money.

“We aspire to be the best and hope that children leave us ready to enter the next stage of their education. We will provide a number of experiences unique to each and every Galileo child. Providing these starting points will give our children the best chance of becoming well-qualified, successful adults, capable of excelling in their chosen careers.”

Galileo will have 3,000 children in its family, and they will each benefit from the budget savings which will result from the increased buying power which a large multi-academy trust holds. Ms Coulson said: “Everything I do should be focused on providing added value – ways in which I can genuinely say that Galileo is making a significant impact by offering exceptional opportunities to learn.

“Every day, even at this early stage, I have the privilege of seeing first-hand the positive benefits which Galileo brings. We have so much potential with the array benefits of for children and a staff body which is so highly-motivated and proud to be part of Galileo. This inspires me to be even more relentless in my pursuit of the best.”

The schools that will become part of Galileo are:

·       Coatham CofE Primary School

·       Ings Farm Primary School

·       JE Batty Primary School

·       Lakes Primary School

·       Galley Hill Primary School

·       Green Gates Primary School

·       New Marske Primary School

·       St Peter’s CofE Primary School

·       Westgarth Primary School

·       Wheatlands Primary School

To find out more about the Galileo Multi-Academy Trust, visit