“Knowledge of languages is the doorway to wisdom”.

Roger Bacon.

 

“A man who knows two languages is worth two men”.

A French proverb

 

Our MFL team of consultants consists of highly qualified and experienced MFL specialists and advisers. They have senior assessor experience working with the English and Welsh Awarding Bodies, the International Baccalaureate and Ofqual. They are also experienced in Ofsted inspection and the New Inspection Framework. Together they are able to provide a wide range of services to schools to help departments to deliver high quality education.

We have a core team that organises the support for schools as well as a significant number of associate specialists in MFL that provide additional support to the team.

The Core Team

Irene Hawkes

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Irène is a French native speaker who has taught English in France and French in UK primary and secondary schools and in sixth form colleges. She has been Head of MFL, Head of Special Needs and IBD coordinator.

Her extensive experience in assessment started in 1983 when she became a GCSE and A level examiner for a major UK awarding body; she then took on the roles of moderator, reviser, team leader, scrutineer and she also helped create new syllabi in MFL.

Between 2002 and 2010, she was Principal examiner for French A2 for another UK awarding body for which she now continues to examine.

She started working for the IBO in 1996 and since 1999 she has been in charge of the French ab initio exams; she also standardises and scrutinizes papers in other languages and trains examiners; she is also involved in curriculum reviews. Last August she was elected the Hexagon Group 2 Representative.

She used to write and mark Key Skills papers in English and now she writes and marks English Functional Skills papers.

She has also worked for Ofqual as a Principal scrutineer.

Irène is a fellow member of the Chartered Institute of Educational Assessors since 2007 and a Chartered Educational Assessor since 2008 and a member of the CIEA board of trustees since 2011.

She is currently doing consultancy work and part time lecturing and she is also involved in the writing of French textbooks.

Testimonial

"Irène demonstrates good leadership qualities and is also a good team member. She enjoys challenging tasks and taking initiatives. She has excellent organisational skills, good communication and interpersonal skills as well the ability to deal swiftly and efficiently with any challenge that arises. She is a caring, friendly, loyal and reliable person with a positive attitude towards life and work" - Professor Pat Preedy, Executive Principal - GEMS Education

"Thank you for your help and inspiration. Remember all those special students that have a better chance in life because of your teaching." - Elizabeth Fernandes, Learning support teacher – St Dominic’s Sixth Form College

"The whole process has been useful for the department to take a look at its assessment policy and to see what we are doing and how we are doing it. All help has been really appreciated by us all at Robert Napier Thank you." - Rupert Champion – Head of Science at Robert Napier School

"Thank you for being such a fantastic French teacher; French won’t be the same without you." -  Konrad Kaptur – Sixth form student

"Thank you for all your help. I might not have decided to continue with the subject next year without your inspiration." - Laura Colgan – Sixth form student

"I think you are an excellent teacher and although I never excelled in French, I have learnt so much." - Marie Parsons – Sixth form student

"When I first started French I hated it because I felt that I couldn’t cope with it but it was your excellent teaching and reassurance which got me through." - Meimunah – Sixth form student.

Deborah Wring

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In her senior leadership roles, Deborah has been responsible for improving the learning of students and the development of staff. Student achievements and the needs of the individual continue to be at the heart of her philosophy and ‘languages for all’ is part of that belief. Deborah has worked, and continues to work, in a range of different contexts related to MFL as a teacher, examiner, adviser and inspector. In her teaching role she taught French to students with special educational needs and has experience in motivating these students to achieve in languages. Her experience in this area of learning led into her appointment fifteen years ago as Chief Examiner for Entry Level French, now Entry Pathways. This role has involved writing specifications for Ofqual as well as training teaching nationwide and moderating students’ work at levels 1-3. As an associate consultant for a local authority, Deborah supported MFL in 40 secondary schools. This role involved working with heads of MFL through departmental reviews and providing training and consultancy for NQTs and Heads of MFL. In addiiton, Deborah set up the strategic learning networks cross the local authority, a system which has been continued despite the withdrawal of funding. She is an experienced inspector in the Uk and overseas and has inspected MFL in both secondary and middle schools and now leads consultative reviews of secondary MFL departments. She is also an external assessor for the Graduate Teachers Programme for MFL. Deborah has worked in the Middle East evaluating lesson taught through the medium of Arabic. As a result, she is comfortable with reviewing departments where there are community or foreign languages beyond the European languages of French, German and Spanish. Deborah prides herself on her attention to detail and her ability to meet deadlines. Her completion of projects to a very high standard has resulted in continued relationships with schools and other regional and national organisations. Her ability to relate well to colleagues at all levels and strong interpersonal skills are factors commented upon by both headteachers and other colleagues in schools.

Kate Richards


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Having worked in education for over twenty years Kate believes passionately in the right of every child and young person to an education which nurtures, supports and inspires them in every way possible. Kate has worked in a range of different contexts as a teacher and leader of MFL with a number of different senior leadership responsibilities, focusing particularly on the development of effective learning and teaching. Within a local authority she led on the development of the Assessment for Learning Strategy as well as focusing on supporting schools in securing effective learning and teaching through the development of thinking skills, coaching and personalising learning. Most recently, as a local authority school improvement adviser she led and managed the authority’s one-to-one tuition programme at both primary and secondary level – supporting schools to develop effective strategies to personalise learning as well as monitoring and evaluating their provision. Kate has a track record of working effectively with senior and middle leaders as well as teachers and support staff and is a highly experienced coach, trainer and presenter. Flexible in approach and creative in problem solving, she has the ability to think strategically and to lead the development of policy and practice at all levels.

Advice, training and support is available in the following areas

Teaching, learning and assessment

  • Developing an effective and exciting MFL curriculum
  • Developing effective schemes of learning
  • Delivering exciting and high quality MFL lessons
  • Delivering good and outstanding lessons
  • Choosing the right resources
  • Choosing the right external assessment for the school
  • Assessing and tracking pupils’ achievement in MFL
  • Increasing motivation and engagement at KS3/KS4
  • Personalising learning in the MFL classroom
  • Challenging and engaging gifted and talented pupils
  • Managing students’ behaviour effectively
  • Developing thinking skills
  • Developing pupil talk

Achievement

  • Developing Assessment for Learning in the MFL classroom
  • Creating high quality and effective internal assessments
  • Understanding external assessments
  • Managing external assessment results
  • Increasing achievement and raising attainment at KS3/KS4 and post-16

Management

  • Developing effective subject leaders in MFL
  • Successfully managing Key Stage transitions
  • Ensuring high profile for MFL in your school
  • Preparing for inspection
  • Developing effectiveness in self-evaluation
  • Adapting to the statutory MFL curriculum changes.
  • Developing outstanding department.

MFL+

  • Developing CLIL.
  • Developing ICT and VLE to enhance MFL learning.
  • Developing links with other schools in the UK and abroad.
  • Developing links with local businesses and universities.
  • Developing intercultural competence and the international dimension within the MFL curriculum.
  • Enriching your MFL curriculum to inspire language learners.